Ben Uri collection


Artist information

Name Ruth Collet (1909-2001)

Other name Ruth Isabelle Salaman

Born Barley, Hertfordshire, England

Died Middlesex, England

Find more work in the collection by this artist

Painter, printer and illustrator Ruth Collet (née Salaman) was part of the Salaman family of painters and studied at the Slade School of Art under Henry Tonks and Philip Wilson Steer, as well as in Paris with S W Hayter and in London with Kathleen Browne and Marian Kratochwil. Before her marriage to musician Robert Collet, she was much associated with the East London Group, she went on to exhibit with the London Group, the Royal Academy, New English Art Club, the Royal Society of British Artists and the Society of Women Artists. She had three major exhibitions at Ben Uri in 1950 (with Adele Reifenberg and Julius Rosenbaum), in 1970 (with Lottie Reizenstein and Frances Baruch) and in 1978, entitled 'The Spice of Life' (with Margaret Levinson). Her work was influenced by Chardin, Daumier and Samuel Palmer.

Object Details

Object type painting

Medium oil on canvas

Materials and techniques oil (medium) canvas (support)

Unframed 61 x 51 cm

Framed 69 x 59 cm

Signed signed (lower left): Collet

Acquisition Anonymous donation

Accession number 1987-68

Display status not on display

Collet's subjects included portraiture, still life and landscape. In 195O she exhibited her recent paintings (in oil, gouache and watercolour) and drawings (in pen and in crayon) in a joint show with husband and wife painters Julius Rosenbaum and Adele Reifenberg at the Ben Uri. In May 1970, the critic of the Art Chronicle observed of her later Ben Uri exhibition: 'Ruth Collet paints the small unsensational events of human life such as women talking in a park or an old man going to sleep on another’s shoulder'.

In this domestic outdoor scene, the artist focuses on the minutae of everyday life: the framed head of a woman peering out of a back window, set against a back drop of slate roofs and red brick walls, two sets of low-slung washing strung along adjoining back yards mirroring one another. The whole, captured in a bold palette, using dry paint energetically applied, suggests a breezy spring day.


house | painting | roofs | urban

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© Ruth Collet estate