Waterhouse tackled classical architecture and fashion in his work during this period, reminding many of the likes of Lawrence Alma Tadema who gave us the likes of Spring, A Coign of Vantage and Ask Me No More. Alma Tadema was a Dutch artist who spent much of his career in the UK and eventually earned himself British citizenship. Another related artist would be John William Godward who particularly impressed in his depictions of marbled surfaces and touches of classical architecture around garden scenes. Later on in his career Waterhouse moved towards a style more in tune with the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood, where he would make individual female models the focus of each painting - see The Soul of the Rose, for example.
There is a sensual touch to many of Waterhouse's paintings and in this piece it would be through the carefully placed hair of the victim plus also the snow which envelopes much of the scene whilst also providing contrast with some of the darker details. St Eulalia's clothes are torn as birds start to pay her an interest which she does not deserve. She was executed in a gruesome manner, burned with torches whilst being nailed down. She must surely have begged for death by the time it arrived. Despite her horrific end, many accounts of her death added a respectful, almost miraculous twist in honour of her. It still seems unusual for Waterhouse to choose such a shocking scene for his work, considering his normal content, but he did depict women in jeopardy frequently, just without the same level of gore and pain.
Saint Eulalia can now be found at the Tate Britain, London. This gallery can be considered one of the finest in the UK, if not the world. The Tate's overall collection is spread between a number of different galleries spread across the country, though most notable highlights can be found here or across the city at the Tate Modern. The Tate Britain itself concentrates on British art since Tudor times, now without any modern art once the alternative venue was setup in the year 2000. Highlights to be found in this extensive collection include work by the likes of Whistler, Singer Sargent, Millais, Rossetti and Hogarth. In truth, the collection includes almost every notable British artist of the past few centuries and offers and excellent introduction to the key movements in which artists from this region were involved with.