`The Swaits'

The English painter Winifred Nicholson loved scenes such as this one in Cumbria, northern England. A calm and welcoming feeling flows from the white farmhouse at the end of the field. The cows graze tranquilly in the foreground. Her warm sense of domestic order pervades this painting. In notes for a 1979 exhibit, published in the book ``Unknown Colour: Paintings, Letters, Writings,'' by Winifred Nicholson (Faber & Faber), she wrote: ``...What I have tried to do is to paint pictures that can call down colour, so that a picture can be a lamp in one's home, not merely a window. A window is what landscape painters build into the density of the walls of those rectangles with which we surround ourselves and call our homes. The density of our vision of light is what I would like to pierce.''

The painter spent time in India before her marriage to artist Ben Nicholson, and her blending of colors reflects an Eastern influence. In this painting, the purple-gray of the sky and the wheat-gold of the fields evolved from her ``Indian'' palette. In ``The Swaits,'' she used these colors, and emerald green, to provide the depth of the faraway fields.

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