George Frederick Watts was a symbolist painter who it might be
said painted ideas not things. He often surrounded his forms with a misty
or cloudy atmosphere for the purpose of showing that they are visionary or
ideal. In this example of his work painted in 1885 he portrays 'Hope' as a
blindfolded woman with a broken lyre. And, although it might seem to suggest the
opposite he is trying to express the popular Victorian aphorisms 'where there is
life there is hope' or 'never despair'.