Detail photos for this Artwork
Tiffany’s Research Notes on “The Little Mermaid”:
Norman Lindsay loved marine legends, and in this beautifully composed work he portrays a mermaid perched on a rock framed by the wide-spread wings of two albatross.
Lindsay heightens the sense of mystery surrounding shy mermaids, portraying his mermaid as wide-eyed with large dark rimmed eyes as though she has been accidentally caught in sight as the waves part around her.
Lindsay also utilised in this work the difficult intaglio medium of Aquatint, which features in a small number of his etchings. Using aquatint, Norman aptly portrayed the frothy turmoil of the tumbling ocean surrounding the mermaid.
This original edition of “The Little Mermaid” was first released for sale in 1934 for the price of 3 guineas and is one of Lindsay’s rarer published etchings because there are only 40 in the edition, less than Norman’s usual 55.
Other original etchings of “The Little Mermaid” are held in the collections of the University of Melbourne, New England Regional Art Museum, National Trust Norman Lindsay Gallery & Museum, Queensland Art Gallery & Mitchell Library.
Interestingly the etching of “The Little Mermaid” at the New England Regional Art Museum was once owned by the great art collector Howard Hinton (1867-1948). Hinton purchased many Lindsay’s and donated over 1,000 important artworks including Lindsay pieces to the Armidale Teacher’s College. The Lindsay etchings that Hinton purchased are now in the New England Regional Art Museum.