Sir Stanley Spencer, R.A. 1891 - 1959
The Dustbin, Cookham
Photo: R.A./John Hammond
© Royal Academy of Arts, London
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The Dustbin, Cookham, 1956
Oil on canvas, 768 X 513 X 18 mm
Purchased from Sir Stanley Spencer, R.A., 1956
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This painting was based on one of twenty-four designs, which Spencer was commissioned to make for an Almanac published by Chatto and Windus in 1927. Spencer chose to illustrate the changing seasons with scenes from his childhood, life with friends in London and his marriage. Seven of the plates were adapted into paintings. The Dustbin was copied almost exactly from the design for September but was painted twenty-nine years after the original drawings were made. The image of dustbins was something that had attracted Spencer since childhood, when he delighted in uncovering other peoples’ unwanted “treasures” from the debris of domestic life.

This work is currently on display in the Reynolds Room at the Royal Academy of Arts and can be viewed by attending one of the free tours of the John Madejski Fine Rooms. Click here for further information about the tours