• Image of 'Hardy'
  • Image of 'Hardy'

The Radiance Toffee Works, owned by the Jackson family, relocated from Scunthorpe in 1923 and was based in the Wheatley Hall Road area of Doncaster. At its height it employed around 500 people, said mainly to have been women. (1)

Carrying a warm and hopeful expression, 'Hardy' is named after the British, Victorian novelist and poet Thomas Hardy, who was renowned as a Romanticist, telling literary tales that explore romantic ideals, during his era of the Industrial revolution and the decline of rural society.

With reference to the milkmaid in the cow field that is illustrated on this 'Radiance' confectionary tin, 'Hardy' mirrors Thomas Hardy's sympathetic portrayal of his heroine and victim 'Tess of the d'Urbervilles'. Described as a 'fallen woman' who struggled against her social circumstances and her desire and aspirations for a better life, Tess became a hard-working milkmaid, after suffering being raped by the bourgeoisie, libertine; Alec, and the subsequent despise of her community, since losing her virginity before marriage.

Referring to an insightful wordpress blog by 'dancingintheraine', here we get a reflection of Hardy's criticism of Victorian notions of female purity and the attitudes of Victorian middle classes. Advocating Tess's character by pointedly subtitling his novel 'A pure woman faithfully presented', Hardy appears to be challenging the sexual morality of his day and "the double standards to which Tess falls victim", in which he portrays Tess as a character who must 'suffer' to 'atone' for her misfortunes. (2)

'dancingintheraine' makes reference to numerous pagan and biblical references made about Tess, referring to Hardy's portrayal of Tess as an 'exploitable' "personification of nature" and a "sacrificial victim". At the end of the novel Tess symbolically lies down on an altar at Stonehenge; commonly believed in Hardy's time to be a pagan temple, before being captured by the police and later taken for execution.(2)

Source references:
1. https://dmbcpublicwebsite.blob.core.windows.net/media/Default/CultureLeisureTourism/Documents/Decorative%20arts.pdf
2. https://dancingintheraine.wordpress.com/2011/12/25/26-tess-of-the-durbervilles-by-thomas-hardy/

Dimensions: H 43cm W 29cm D 20cm

Mixed Media:
Vintage Composition Doll,
Vintage Radiance Tin,
Vintage Boots Plaster Tin,
Vintage Copper Posser,
Vintage Bun Tins,
Bayonet Cap Pygmy Lamps,
Brass Bayonet Cap Lamp holders,
3 Core Dark Brown Silk Covered Flexible Cable,
Junction Box,
Tough Plug fitted with a 3 Amp Fuse,
Various Nuts, Bolts, and Washers,
PAT Tested.

Please be advised:

Though these assemblage sculptures contain vintage doll components that may have once been played with by children, this piece is not a toy to be played with.

As with all bulbs, they get hot! I use low 15 wattage bulbs on each piece but the bulbs still shed heat, so be advised to display your piece in a suitable location.

Overseas Enquiries:

For an overseas shipping quote please contact me by email

Also note - as these sculptures operate on UK voltage (220-240 V 50 Hz) you will need a voltage converter to use them overseas.

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