Notts treasures: Spooner's Goose Fair
Artist Arthur Spooner (1873-1962) captured a moment in 1920s Nottingham which now draws the crowds at Nottingham Castle.
The Goose Fair was painted in 1926. The work shows one of the last times the event was held in the city centre, before it moved to the outskirts of Nottingham.
Displayed in the Long Gallery, the work is Nottingham's equivalent to the Louvre's Mona Lisa, being a visitor favourite.
Sarah Skinner, Keeper of Art at Nottingham Castle, says the oil painting brings a 'sense of noise' to a very quiet space as well as the smells of frying onions, mushy peas and candy floss.
"People like the picture for what it showed then [compared with] now."
Goose Fair is still part of the fabric of Nottingham although it is now held every year at the Nottingham Recreation Ground.
Arthur Spooner (1873 - 1962)
Arthur Spooner taught landscape and figurative painting at the Nottingham College of Art in the early to mid 1900s.
A member of the Royal Society of Artists he was feted during his lifetime and is one of Nottingham's most famous painters.
His earlier work included landscapes, portraits and figure subjects but few have survived.
Today portraits by Arthur Spooner may sell for five figure sums but The Goose Fair was bought at auction for much more.
In 2004, after a bidding war, Sir Harry Djanogly purchased the painting for £218,050.
'The Goose Fair' is presently on long term loan to the Nottingham Castle gallery from the private collection of Sir Harry Djanogly © The Artists Estate.
last updated: 13/05/2009 at 17:58