Joseph Farquharson (Scottish, 1846-1935)
The Ruins of the Temple at Luxor, ca. 1890
Oil on canvas, 24 x 36 1/2 in.
Farquharson made his first trip to Egypt in 1885 and, although he returned there several times, Orientalist works appear only occasionally in his oeuvre. In this view of the great Temple of Luxor on the banks of the Nile, he emphasizes both the architectural elements and the people in the foreground, contrasting the regularity of the ancient pillared hall with the random groups of contemporary Egyptians. The people appear to wait, perhaps for market day, under a blazing sun. Farquharson’s vision of the famed site is authenticated by his close attention to the stylized palm columns on the left and the papyrus bundle columns to the right of the temple.