The Woman in White is a Victorian “Sensation Novel” written in 1859-1860 by Wilkie Collins. I discovered it more than 10 years ago, and since then it is one of my favorite novels. Why is it so appealing? What inspired it?
Most facts here come from John Sutherland’s notes and introduction to The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins, Oxford World’s Classics.
John Atkinson Grimshaw (1836 – 1893) is a great Victorian painter, nearly unknown in France – except in some book covers – but thankefully better known in the UK. A few years ago I was thrilled to see a lot of his paintings in an exhibition in London.
Grimshaw is famous for his moonlit, gaslit landscapes and cityscapes. I like his way to show those big Victorian industrial cities in a dreamy, nearly magical way.
Some of his paintings are wonderful fantasylike portraits of ships, docks, quays and bridges, forests of masts fit for a modern industrial Merlin.