Edward Clifford - The Taj

Edward Clifford - The Taj



The Taj

Signed with initials, inscribed with title and dated 1888

Watercolour and bodycolour


12 by 17 cm., 4 by 6 in. (frame size 33.5 by 37.5 cm., 13 by 14 in.)

Provenance: Given by the artist to Rev Wilson Carlile; Reginald Clifford Carlile; Elizabeth Carlile and thence by descent.

Clifford was born in Bristol and studied at the Royal Academy. He painted and exhibited landscapes, portraits and historical subjects in oil and watercolour and had many aristocratic patrons. He was influenced by Burne-Jones and the group of artists who exhibited at the Dudley gallery and the present watercolour is typical of his dreamy aesthetic works which led Philip Burne-Jones to write of him: “I think perhaps he is to be seen at his very best in his landscapes, into which he has always infused an atmosphere of romance and beauty as attractive as it was peculiarly individual. I know no other man’s work quite like it.”

Clifford visited Kashmir in 1888 on his way to Hawaii where he was to present the famous leper worker Father Damien with a picture from Edward Burne-Jones. He published his experiences in Father Damien; A Journey from Cashmere to his Home in Hawaii in 1889. This work, one of a group of six watercolours of Cashmere and India, was given by the artist to Wilson Carlile, founder of the Church Army. Clifford was honorary Secretary of the Church Army, an evangelistic Anglican society.