1847 – 1928
Ancient Doorway

Oil on board, signed & inscribed ‘Constantine 26th April (18)79’
Image size   12 ¼ x 8 ¼ inches
Ornate gilt Orientalist frame

In the winter of 1872-73, Bridgman visited North Africa for the first time. This trip marked a turning point in Bridgman’s career after which he devoted himself entirely to painting Orientalist scenes. Their first stop was Tangier, which Bridgman described as “a real Arab city”. They then visited Oran, and later Algiers.

On his second trip he visited Constantine, Algiers where our painting was produced and then south to Biskra where he rented a studio. During the 1870s and 1880s Bridgman visited Egypt and Algeria several times, returning almost annually to Algiers.

This painting depicts an ancient doorway, which once protected the house. The inner sactum of the courtyard with its orange tree and a pair of shoes in the doorway, can be glimpsed at.