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The Rainbow

Lawrence Gowing, 17 March 1983

Rubens and the Poetics of Landscape 
by Lisa Vergara.
Yale, 228 pp., £29, November 1982, 0 03 000250 8
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James Ward’s Gordale Scar: An Essay in the Sublime 
by Edward Nygren.
Tate Gallery, 64 pp., £2.95, November 1982, 0 905005 93 7
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... place to have a rainbow!’ Patrick George, a considerable Rubenist, once said to me. But Lisa Vergara’s destination is the idyllic landscapes of the last years of his life – and they no longer show ‘phenomena’ in this sense. There are no catastrophes and no perils. Instead there is the most phenomenal thing of all, the presence of nature ...

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