Our Collection

Retrieving a Ball (1954)

Print, Lithograph on paper, 590mm x 711mm
Man and woman retrieving a ball from a ploughed field

Retrieving a Ball, 1954

Lithograph, 40 x 53.5cm

Gifted by Lathonia Mercer 2017

In this engaging scene, Spencer set the figures on the edge of a ploughed field close to Cliveden View, his home in Cookham Rise.  In his popular Cookham exhibition of 1958 the artist used the alternative title, ‘Barbed Wire at Cookham’.  Spencer made only three lithographs, under the guidance of Henry Trivick, visiting instructor in lithography at the Regent Street Polytechnic.  In a memoir, Trivick recorded that Spencer ‘worked from a small rough sketch’ and ‘slowly built up the design in lithographic chalk on a zinc plate’.  Trivick ‘took a few good black and white prints off the plate’, of which this must be one.  About 30 coloured lithographs were also made.

Text:  Carolyn Leder 2012