The Refusal (oil on canvas), Hughes, Edward (1829-1908) / Private Collection / Photo Â© Bonhams, London, UK / The Bridgeman Art Library
Edward Robert Hughes was a brilliant Pre-Raphaelite artist who produced exhibition-quality studies. Hughes (1849 – 1914) belonged to several prestigious art societies, and depicted mystical, Shakespearean and Italian literary themes with rich golds, blues and sheer fabrics. His nudes, which were highly erotic, also brought him acclaim. Hughes helped renowned painter William Holman Hunt finish several paintings when the elderly artist began losing his sight.