James Harvey British Art is a new gallery dedicated to promoting British Artists from the 17th century to the present day. With an emphasis on the less established names of the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, the gallery will also promote traditional figurative contemporary art. This catalogue is representative of the style and spectrum of works which will be exhibited in the future. Located in Chelsea at 15 Langton Street, the informal and relaxed gallery provides a wonderful space in which to display the eclectic mix of paintings that are united through their British origin and quality and will form the backbone of this new venture. A primary objective of the gallery will be to return to a traditional gallery-based style of dealing, with a varied programme of exhibitions and catering for a wide variety of tastes and budgets, with works starting at under one thousand pounds. Our full programme is listed on pages 91 to 94. In this, our first catalogue, I would like to thank the directors of Mallett who through their backing have made this new venture possible. I very much look forward to welcoming everyone to the gallery when it opens in early April 2008. In the meantime I hope that you enjoy browsing this catalogue and our website www.jamesharveybritishart.com.
James Harvey March 2008
Contents SAWREY GILPIN
JAMES ARTHUR O'CONNOR
JOHN FRANCIS RIGAUD
DENYS GEORGE WELLS
JOSEPH WRIGHT OF DERBY
J. STEVEN DEWS
SAMUEL HENRY ALKEN
COPLESTONE WARRE BAMPFYLDE
THE SARTORIUS FAMILY
WILLIAM HENRY DAVIS
LIONEL DALHOUSIE ROBERTSON EDWARDS
WILLIAM GEORGE JENNINGS
SIR HENRY RAEBURN
CHARLES HENRY SCHWANFELDER
WILLIAM S. HEDGES
JOSEPH FRANCIS GILBERT
SAWREY GILPIN A portrait of the black and white English Water Spaniel ‘Tim’ by a pond in an evening landscape Oil on canvas Unframed: 58 x 66 in (147.3 x 167.6cm) Framed: 651/2 x 731/2 in (166.2 x 186.7cm) Contained within a fine giltwood frame PROVENANCE By family descent at Crichel House, Dorset, until the present. The painting has never previously been on the art market P2H0424
Gilpin is known primarily for his sporting paintings, with commissions from distinguished patrons such as the Duke of Cumberland, Colonel Thornton of York, and Samuel Whitbread, MP As an animal painter, he collaborated with many artists including Turner, Marlow, Romney and Zoffany Gilpin exhibited at the Society of Artists from 1762-1783, where he was elected President in 1774; and at the Royal Academy from 1786-1807, where he was elected a Royal Academician in 1797 This picture is a document of a now extinct breed; the English Water Spaniel
The English Water Spaniel was an ancient breed which enjoyed great favour amongst the shooting fraternity for centuries. It was steady of gait, determined and affectionate in character, and had an enthusiasm for water-work. It was always ready for work in the coldest weather, helped by its dense and waterproof coat. Its popularity declined during the nineteenth century as the sport of shooting changed to driven shooting rather than individual wildfowling, and its role was supplanted by the enthusiastic and fast (not to say wild) English Springer Spaniel, now the ubiquitous shooting dog. The breed, sadly, died out at the beginning of the 20th century, though its genes partly survive in its headstrong cousin the Irish Waterspaniel and the Curly-Coat Retriever.
Stubbs, but he emerges as a leading horse and animal painter of a competence which is always reliable and occasionally inspired. He is an important link between the early English School of Wootton, Tillemans and the like, and the later painters exemplified by Ferneley and Herring. He was the president of the Society of Artists in 1773, and was elected RA in 1797.
Sawrey Gilpin (1733-1807) was a member of an old Cumberland family who chose a career in sporting painting, at which he was encouraged as a young man by the great Duke of Cumberland who had suppressed the Jacobite rising of 1745. Gilpin, though based in London, always retained his Northern links, and had as patron many northern sportsmen, like the sporting fanatic Colonel Thornton of Thornville Royal for whom he painted numerous pictures.
It is perhaps the strongest tribute to the very high quality of the present painting that it was until very recently thought by scholars to be the work of George Stubbs, an attribution that was finally rejected when a signed preliminary drawing was discovered in a London auction at Sotheby's which is signed by Sawrey Gilpin.
Gilpin has suffered from being under the shadow of his incomparable contemporary George
A clubbable man, he was popular with his fellow Royal Academicians. He frequently collaborated with them, adding portraits of favourite animals to numerous pictures by Barret, Walton, Romney, Zoffany, Reinagle and even the young Turner. He was the teacher of Thomas Gooch, another prolific animal painter and with whose work Gilpin’s is sometimes confused.
Highly acclaimed during his own lifetime, the critic for the Morning Herald commented in 1794, ‘Mr Gilpin is inferior to Mr Stubbs in anatomical knowledge, but is superior to him in grace and genius.’
Sawrey Gilpin RA: “Tim” (Pencil and chalk drawing, signed and inscribed)
SAWREY GILPIN A Black and White English Springer Spaniel in a landscape Oil on canvas Unframed: 241/4 x 321/4 in (64.1 x 81.9cm) Framed: 301/4 x 371/4 in (76.8 x 94.6cm) In a good carved and giltwood frame P2H0318
BARTHOLOMEW DANDRIDGE Three-quarter length portrait of a girl, perhaps the Hon. Anne, eldest daughter of Sir Jacob de Bouverie, 1st Viscount Folkestone Oil on canvas, painted circa 1740-45 Unframed: 351/2 x 28 in (90 x 71cm) Framed: 41 x 34 in (104 x 86.5cm) In a fine carved and giltwood frame PROVENANCE By descent to David Pleydell-Bouverie (1911-2006), grandson of William, 5th Earl of Radnor. P2H0225
Dandridge studied at St Martin’s Lane Academy and in the studio of Sir Godfrey Kneller He inherited both Kneller’s studio and his practice upon the latter’s death He was one of the first painters in England to adopt the more lively and fresh innovations of the rococo The identity of the sitter has been lost; however the descent within the family of the Lords Folkestone and Radnor, suggest that the sitter is of that family
Bartholomew Dandridge (1691-1755) was baptised in London on December 17th 1691. His initial training was at the St Martin’s Lane Academy and with Sir Godfrey Kneller, whose studio and practice he took over in 1731 after the latter’s death. Although he was trained in the relatively restrained style of the school of Kneller, he was amongst the first in England to respond to the innovations of the rococo which were being imported into England from France in the early and mid 1730’s. These have a liveliness of composition and a lightness and freshness of palette which divides them absolutely from the style of the 1720’s. A portrait by Dandridge, formerly with Lane Fine Art, of the daughters of Scroop Egerton, 1st Duke of Bridgwater, is a very early essay in this new English Rococo style. Painted very close to 1735, it is signed, and shows the rapid development which the artist brought about in these years. This picture, which is, as it were, on the cusp, still has faint echoes of the earlier style, especially in the rather dry manner in which the paint is handled, reminiscent of the late style of Kneller himself. There is an informality in the composition with the addition of a pet dog and garland of flowers, but the setting is still classical. The following year (1736-7) he painted the daughters of the Earl of Gainsborough in what by then was a fully developed Frenchified style which looks more towards Watteau than it does towards Kneller. Danbridge’s Portrait of the Misses Noel (oil painting on canvas, 46 x 61 inches. Signed; painted 1740. Manchester City Art Galleries)
illustrates the considerable progress made by Dandridge in the years between 1735 and 1740: it is painted in a full-blown rococo style which finds its roots deeply in French painting of the period. The composition is wholly assured, and the dry attenuated handing of the paint has been replaced with an altogether more fluid technique which looks towards such contemporary English painters as Highmore and Hudson. The classical urn is enlivened and softened with a garland of flowers, and the composition is altogether more mouvemente. In the present picture, Dandridge's favoured rococo motifs are repeated: the statue of the Armorino with a dolphin serves the same compositional purpose as the Satyr playing his pipe in the Manchester picture, whilst the sitter holds a chaplet of flowers just as in the Bridgwater painting of 1735. The pose of the sitter, caught fleetingly in movement, though, suggests a later date than this, around the early years of the 1740's, a dating which is supported by the fashionable dress of the sitter. The pose is, indeed, very “advanced” for English painting of this period, when most female portraits were still in the heavier Augustan style of Thomas Hudson and the like. In this, it looks forward to the style of painting developed by Joseph Wright of Derby in the early 1750's. The identity of the sitter has been lost; however the descent within the family of the Lords Folkestone and Radnor, suggest that the sitter is of that family. She is of the right apparent age to be Anne, the eldest daughter of the 1st Lord Folkestone and his wife, the heiress Mary Clarke, who he had married in 1723.
BEN MARSHALL A gentleman holding a bay hunter whilst stroking a white foxhound; other foxhounds stand by, and a hunt proceeds in the distance Oil on canvas, painted circa 1798 Unframed: 25 x 30 in (63.5 x 76.2cm) Framed: 32 x 37 in (81.3 x 94cm) In its original carved and gilded George III frame P2I0026
Initially a schoolmaster, Marshall did not take up painting until about 1790 His progress was rapid, and by the mid 1790â€™s he was being patronised by HRH The Prince of Wales Marshall was at his artistic peak in the years 1798 to 1803, when he produced some of the greatest works of the English School of animal painting This picture is to be included in the Catalogue Raisonne currently being prepared by David Fuller of the British Sporting Art Trust
Benjamin Marshall (1768-1834) was born at Seagrave in Leicestershire. He worked initially as a schoolmaster, and seems not to have taken up painting until about 1790. He was introduced in the following year to William Pochin Esq., the local Member of Parliament, who in turn introduced him to his first Master, the portrait painter Lemuel Francis Abbot. Marshall's progress was rapid, and by the middle of the 1790's he was being patronised by HRH The Prince of Wales. Marshall was at his artistic peak in the years 1798 to 1803, and the paintings produced from his brush during this period rank with the very greatest works of the English School of animal painting. Marshall's name is perhaps the only one which may be mentioned in the same breath as the great Stubbs, and he is the natural inheritor of the wonderful tradition of equine portraiture which Stubbs had so developed during the second half of the 18th century. Where Stubbs is analytical and refined in his technique, Marshall is immediate and vigorous: the freshness of his handling of paint and the strength of his brushwork is quite remarkable. It is the precursor of the revolutionary techniques of the impressionists much later in the 19th century in its freedom. The present painting was commissioned by an ancestor of the previous owner, and has always been in the same family collection until the recent demise of the last member of the family. It has thus only very recently come to light, being otherwise entirely unrecorded in literature. It may be securely dated based on technique to the last years of the 1790â€™s. At the date of the painting Marshall was at the very height of his powers, and the painting is a splendid and typical example of his skill as both an equine and human portraitist. The painting has been conserved in pristine state.
JAMES ARTHUR O'CONNOR A countryman resting by a wooded path, a landscape beyond Oil on canvas Unframed: 7 x 83/4 in (17.8 x 22.2cm) Framed: 10 x 12 in (25.4 x 20.5cm) P2I0013
Inscribed with the identity of the artist on a 19th century label on the reverse James Arthur O'Connor is amongst the best-known of the early Irish landscape painters He was born in Dublin in 1792, the son of a print-seller and engraver His work is a vivid record of the land in Dublin and its environs before the developments of the 19th century
James Arthur O'Connor (1792-1841) is amongst the best-known and most prolific of the early Irish landscape painters, and his work is the best documented. Born in Dublin in 1792, his work provides a bridge between the early Georgian school of Barret, Carver and Roberts, and the early Victorian topographers who succeeded him. He retained the eighteenth century delight in Irish topography, and he has left us with a vivid record of the land in Dublin and its environs before the developments of the 19th century. O'Connor's father was a print-seller and engraver, so a career in the arts was perhaps inevitable for his son; we have it on the authority of Thomas Bodkin that he received his training from William Sadler. Though the two artists' subjects are similar, their techniques are very different. Where Sadler is adept at a flickering use of paint on a thin washed-in design, O'Connor works his paint more thoroughly, and achieves a higher “finish” and more solid colouration and impasto. Sadler is essentially a topographer; O'Connor is a Romantic interpreter of the Irish landscape. The former speaks a solid prose, where O'Connor is imbued with the poetry of landscape. The present painting, which dates from about 1830 when the artist was in his mid-30's, is an example of a type of composition of which the artist was very fond. It relates closely in technical terms to “Homeward Bound” illustrated as Catalogue number 63 in the 1985 “O'Connor” exhibition at the National Gallery of Ireland.
JOHN FRANCIS RIGAUD Portrait of Captain Sir George Montagu, standing, three-quarter-length, with shipping beyond Inscribed and dated lower right, ‘CAPT. GEORGE MONTAGU/1782’ Oil on canvas Unframed: 50 x 40 in (127 x 101.6cm) Framed: 57 x 47in (144.8 x 119.3cm) P2H0340
Born on 12 December 1750, Montagu entered the Royal Naval Academy at age 13 and was appointed to the Preston based at the Jamaica station In 1795, Montagu was promoted to vice-admiral and in 1803 he became commander-in-chief at Portsmouth Rigaud received his artistic training in Italy, notably the Academy in Bologna (Member, 1766) and Rome where he met the distinguished Irish painter, James Barry Rigaud arrived in England, via Paris, on 14 December 1771 and was appointed an Associate of the Royal Academy where he exhibited from 1772 until his death in 1810
Sir George Montagu was born on 12 December 1750, the second son of Admiral John Montagu. At the age of thirteen he entered the Royal Naval Academy at Portsmouth and was thence appointed to the Preston, going out to the Jamaica station. On his return to England in 1770, he passed his examination and in February the following year he was made Captain and became Commander of the Kingfisher. He went out to the North American station during the early years of the War of Independence and participated in the landing army at Boston and the occupation of New York. From 1777 he commanded the Romney as flag-captain to his father. On his return in 1779 he was appointed to the frigate Pearl, in which he captured the Spanish frigate Santa Monica and in the following year the large French privateer Espèrance. The Pearl returned to England in 1782, the date of the present portrait. In 1795, Montagu was promoted to vice-admiral and in 1803 he became commander-in-chief at Portsmouth. He died in December 1829.
John Francis Rigaud was born in Turin on 18 May 1742, and he received his artistic training in most of the principal towns of Italy, notably the Academy in Bologna (Member, 1766) and Rome. In Rome he met the distinguished Irish painter, James Barry, who persuaded him to seek his fortune in England. Rigaud arrived in England, via Paris, on 14 December 1771 already a fully trained and versatile painter after his experience and training in Italy. In London, Rigaud was swiftly accepted into the centre of artistic life and within twelve months of his arrival was appointed an Associate of the Royal Academy in recognition of his talents. He exhibited there from 1772 until his death in 1810, having become a full member in 1784. He married an English woman, Mary Williams, in July 1774, and they had several children including his son and biographer, Stephen Rigaud. A versatile painter, Rigaud was commissioned to paint histories, decorative schemes and mythologies, but was most successful as a portrait painter. The life of Rigaud is extensively documented in the biography prepared by his son (the manuscript of which is now in the Beinecke Library at Yale University) which was edited in 1984 for the Walpole Society. In consequence, we know more of Rigaud than almost any of his contemporaries. His reputation amongst his fellow artists was high (although towards the end of his life he seemed to have become quarrelsome, and thereby lost several elections for posts as officer of the RA) and that judgement is amply vindicated by his surviving portraits which are seldom to be seen on the art market. Rigaud was at the height of his success in the 1780s until the mid 1790s. He was a contributor to the seminal Shakespeare Gallery formed by Alderman Boydell, which was the first attempt (and an heroic one) to establish a native school of History painting on the grand scale. It is not for the grandeur and pomposity of history painting though that Rigaud is known: ‘His
best works are his portraits in a natural and unflattering style’ (Waterhouse, Dictionary of 18th Century British Painters). These portraits cover all aspects of the genre: small conversation pieces, large family pieces, and especially quiet and studious single figures at three-quarter length. They are far more analytical of character than the lofty (and sometimes arrogant) productions of Reynolds, and more solid than the light-hearted rococo of Gainsborough. Rigaud is at his best with sitters whose personality comes across as more central than the finery of their dress or the pretension of their class. He seems to have made something of a speciality of portraits of officers of the Royal Navy, starting in 1778 with his Royal Academy exhibit of Admiral William Parry (National Maritime Museum, Greenwich), a deliberately conservatively posed portrait of an ageing and conscientious officer. It harks back to the work of Thomas Hudson a generation earlier. Three years later though Rigaud exhibited what must rank amongst the finest small group of Naval portraits ever shown at the Academy his notable portraits of Nelson, Peacock and Pole. The contrast with the Parry portrait could hardly be stronger: here was the new generation taking over from the old. Rigaud completed this remarkable portrait of Montagu shortly after this group of portraits were exhibited, in keeping with this new and more glamorous style.
DENYS GEORGE WELLS Kathleen Reading Signed lower left, ‘Denys.G.Wells.23’ Oil on canvas Unframed: 283/4 x 201/2 in (73 x 50.8cm) Framed: 361/4 x 271/2 in (92 x 70.2 cm) P2H0552
Born in Bradford in 1881, Wells studied art at The Slade, in its heyday, 18971903, under Henry Tonks, Wilson Steer, W.W. Russel and Fredrick Brown He exhibited regularly at The Royal Academy, The Society of British Artists, The New English Art Club, The Britain in Watercolours Exhibition, Bradford City Art Gallery, Brighton Art Gallery and The Royal Glasgow Institute of Fine Arts He was elected a member of The Royal Society of British Artists at the early age of 25 in 1906. He was awarded The de Laszlo Medal twice for outstanding paintings, and became Vice-President of the Society in 1955 Wells painted scenes not only in other parts of Great Britain, but also in Venice, Rome, Amsterdam, Spain and Northern France
Denys G. Wells (1881-1973) was a British painter in oils and watercolours. He was born in Bedford in 1881, the fourth son of George Wells, J.P., a Mayor of Bedford for many years. Denys Wells was educated at Belford School and later won many prizes when he studied art at The Slade, in its heyday, 1897-1903, under Henry Tonks, Wilson Steer, W.W. Russel and Fredrick Brown. He continued his art studies for two years in Montmartre, Paris, and upon his return he was elected a member of The Royal Society of British Artists at the early age of 25 in 1906. He was awarded The de Laszlo Medal twice for outstanding paintings, and became Vice-President of the Society in 1955. He joined the Artists’ Rifles in 1914 and was commissioned as an officer. During the Second World War, too old for the army, he served as a fulltime air raid warden and was awarded the British Empire Medal for gallantry. Denys Wells was Chairman of the Ridley Arts Society 1966-1967 and was subsequently VicePresident. He exhibited regularly at The Royal Academy, The Society of British Artists, The New English Art Club, The Britain in
Watercolours Exhibition, Bradford City Art Gallery, Brighton Art Gallery and The Royal Glasgow Institute of Fine Arts. He received the Lord Mayor’s Art Award for works exhibited at The Guildhall in 1969. His works have travelled the country, and hang in private collections in Europe, South Africa, Australia and The United States, as well as in official collections such as those in The London Guildhall, The Imperial War Museum, The Museum of London and The Palace of Westminster, to name but a few. Although his watercolours are predominantly of London, he painted scenes not only in other parts of Great Britain, but also in Venice, Rome, Amsterdam, Spain and Northern France. Denys Wells was commissioned by HM The Queen Mary to paint a picture for the Queen’s Dolls House at Windsor. He also received HM The Queen’s Pension for his services to the Arts on the recommendation of the Prime Minister in 1958. Denys Wells died in 1973 at the age of 92, painting almost to the end.
JOSEPH WRIGHT OF DERBY A moonlight view of the eruption of Mount Vesuvius taken from the Capo di Posillipo Oil on canvas, painted late 1780's Unframed: 231/4 x 291/2 in (59 x 74.9cm) Framed: 28 x 34in (71.1 x 86.4cm) In a giltwood frame P2I0034
Initially a portrait painter who studied under Thomas Hudson, Wright soon expanded his oeuvre to include the famous candlelight scenes that he exhibited at the Society of Artists in London, between 1765 and 1773 A trip to Italy in 1773-75 provided new ideas, and inspired a series of dramatic views of Vesuvius erupting, and of the annual ‘Girandola’, or firework display, in Rome Wright painted at least 27 paintings (probably more) and numerous in-situ drawings of views of Vesuvius, both quiet and in eruption
Joseph Wright ARA (1734-1797) originally trained as a portrait painter in the London studio of Thomas Hudson during the years 1751-53 and 1756-57, and portrait work continued to figure in his output throughout his life. However, once he had returned home to his native Derby, after his training, his artistic interests soon expanded to include the famous candlelight scenes of scientific experiments, blacksmith’s shops, iron forges, and academies which brought him early acclaim when he exhibited them at the Society of Artists in London, between 1765 and 1773. A trip to Italy in 1773-75 provided new ideas, and inspired a series of dramatic views of Vesuvius erupting, and of the annual ‘Girandola’, or firework display, in Rome, as well as stimulating a fresh interest in painting landscapes, both of Italian and English views. Wright was wide-ranging in his choice of subject-matter, and other pictures depict scenes from literature, both classical and contemporary, and the occasional history painting, like the now-lost ‘Siege of Gibraltar’ and the unusual ‘Widow of an Indian Chief’, both exhibited at a one-man show that Wright staged in some hired rooms in Covent Garden in 1785. Apart from other spells in Liverpool (1768-71) and Bath (1775-77), Wright lived and worked in his native Derby, which meant that he was on the doorstep of the industrial developments of Strutt and Arkwright in Derby and in the Derwent Valley north of the town, of which he produced an invaluable pictorial record. He is today recognised as one of the leading painters of the 18th century in Britain, noted both for his mastery of dramatic effects of light and shadow, and for his scientific and industrial subjects. The English Midlands were the scene of much pioneering industrial activity and advanced philosophical discussion in the second half of the century, and Wright, working in his native Derby, was acquainted with some of the leading figures in both spheres.
Wright’s fascination with, and lifelong depiction of, dramatic lighting effects lead him to paint at least 27 paintings (probably more) and numerous in-situ drawings of views of Vesuvius, both quiet and in eruption. Inevitably, the provenances of this group of pictures has over the years become extremely tangled, not least because so many have an identical title in the contemporary documentary sources. The present painting is relatively small amongst his “Vesuvius” output, and, given its size, is likely to be one of the several paintings which he executed in the 1780's and for which he charged 30 guineas (£31.50), since we know that he charged 40 guineas for a painting sold to Thomas Gisborne in 1788 which is somewhat larger: 23 x 33 inches. (qv. Benedict Nicholson Joseph Wright of Derby (1968, p.281). The distant view of Vesuvius from the Capo di Posilippo in Moonlight is treated by Wright in a picture in the Anson collection (panel 25 x 33 inches): here the volcano is in quiet mode, but the viewpoint and composition are closely related to the present painting. A larger (40 x 50 inches) picture in the Miller-Mundy collection (op. cit. p.79) repeats the composition, with variations. These latter are dated by Nicholson to the late 1780's. From the sombre, monochromatic fringes of this painting, the eye is drawn to the fiery eruption and lava, the main subject of the work, as the artist fully indulges his constant interest in dramatic lighting effects. The contrasting lights of moon and fire are explored in depth. The intensity of colouring increases the sense of drama as the static houses and boats along the shore line and the calmness of the sea are contrasted with the violence of the explosions.
EDWARD BROWN Partridge Shooting and Duck Shooting Signed and dated 1853 & 1854 respectively Oil on canvas Unframed: 28 x 36 in (71 x 91.5cm) Framed: 35 x 43 in (89 x 109cm) P2G0049
Brown was a self-taught but very highly refined sporting artist He spent his entire career in and around his native Warwickshire The present pair of paintings is somewhat unusual in that they depict shooting scenes, a subject-matter which he treated relatively rarely
Edward Brown was born on 7 July 1823, and baptised six weeks later on the 1st September 1823 at Saint Philip’s Church, Birmingham. No record survives of his artistic training, and he may have been self-taught. He seems to have spent his entire career in and around Warwickshire, and lived for most of his life in Coventry, to the extent that he is frequently given the sobriquet “E.Brown of Coventry” until recent research established the dates of his birth and death, which was in 1877. His work is
typical of that of the County sporting painter, executing large numbers of horse-portraits, hunting scenes and the like for an enthusiastic local clientele. He was prolific, and numerous paintings, done in a careful and refined style, survive in collections in his native county.
JAMES SEYMOUR Equestrian portrait of George Burrows on his grey hunter in a wooded landscape Signed with initials and dated 1746 lower left Oil on canvas Unframed: 40 x 50in (101.6 x 127cm) Framed: 471/4 X 571/2 in (121 X 147cm) Contained in its original superb carved and gilded swept â€œChippendaleâ€? frame PROVENANCE by descent from the sitter until acquired by the Rev. John Brett of Derisingham Hall, Norfolk the great-great-great-grandfather of the present owner, taken in lieu of a bad debt, and thence by descent at Cricket St. Thomas House in Somerset P2H0424
Seymour is best known for his pictures of racehorses and hunting scenes, many of which were engraved by Thomas Burford and Richard Houston By 1739 he was 'reckoned the finest draughtsman in his way [of horses, hounds etc.] in the whole world' (Universal Spectator, 1739) The present painting may be considered amongst his very finest works He was employed by Charles Seymour, 6th Duke of Somerset, to decorate a room at Petworth House, in Sussex, with portraits of his racehorses
James Seymour (1702-1752) gained a favourable and great reputation for his pictures of racehorses and hunting scenes, many of which were engraved by Thomas Burford and Richard Houston. By 1739 he was 'reckoned the finest draughtsman in his way [of horses, hounds etc.] in the whole world' (Universal Spectator, 1739), and he was certainly preferred to his chief rival, John Wootton, by many sporting patrons. He was employed by Charles Seymour, 6th Duke of Somerset, to decorate a room at Petworth House, in Sussex, with portraits of his racehorses. Walpole tells a story of his truculent behaviour to the Duke when the latter took offence at Seymour claiming he was related to him. William Jolliffe MP, of Ammerdown, was another of his patrons. Seymour's paintings of the horse in its various attitudes are highly original. They display a stylistic naivety in which meticulous attention to detail and eerily static compositions somehow combine to create powerful and memorable images. The present painting may considered amongst his very finest works.
J. STEVEN DEWS The Fife Regatta on the Clyde Signed bottom left Painted in June 1998 Oil on canvas Unframed: 40 x 60in (101.5 x 152.5cm) Framed: 461/2 x 66in (118 x 167.6cm)
Dews was born in Beverly, North Humberside, in 1949 This painting depicts the Fife Regatta, held on the Clyde in June 1998, which was the largest gathering of yachts designed by the William Fife Yard The yacht in the foreground is Moonbeam, an 82 foot yawl built for Mr C Johnson in 1903 Passing astern of Moonbeam is Kentra, built as a cruising yacht for Kenneth Clark of Acharacle in 1923
Steven Dews is probably England’s most respected contemporary marine artist. He was born in Beverley, North Humberside, in 1949 and his formal training was taken in the north of England. Dews’ work is meticulous in its detail and observation of natural surroundings and this perception and understanding has developed through his personal love of sailing and the sea. His reputation has grown rapidly over the past few years, mainly through the work he has undertaken as the official artist of many of the world’s major yachting events. His work has an international appeal and he has received many commissions throughout the world including those from large corporations such as BP and Amoco. So great is the demand for his commission works in fact that at present there is a three year waiting list. As a result of this waiting list and the slow
speed at which Dews works, relatively few of his original works are currently available on the open market. Exhibitions 1976 North Humberside Fine Arts 1977 Pantheon Gallery, San Francisco 1978 Fine Arts Gallery, Dubai 1980 Amoco Travelling Exhibition 1982 Windjammer Gallery, Bermuda This outstanding painting of the Fife Regatta conveys the majesty of the golden age of sail. The regatta was held on the Clyde in June 1998 and was the largest gathering of the yachts designed by the William Fife Yard. Twelve yachts took part including Moonbeam (seen in the foreground of this painting), an 82 foot yawl built for Mr C. Johnson in 1903. Her interesting life included French ownership prior to the First World War during which she was rumoured to have been used by the French Resistance. After the war she had a brief period of being laid up prior to being put into service as a charter yacht following an extensive re-fit. Her ownership changed in the mid-1980’s and she is now Norwegian owned. Passing astern of Moonbeam is Kentra. Built as a cruising yacht for Kenneth Clark of Acharacle in 1923, she had an overall length of 100 feet and was of solid construction with a high level of fittings below decks suitable for gentleman’s cruising. Her first season was spent cruising the west coast of Scotland, after which she was sold to Charles Livingstone whose family owned the Cunard Shipping Line. Her later history involved many changes of ownership where she has served as a trusted charter yacht in many parts of the world.
The oldest of the yachts at the regatta was Vagrant, a small two ton racing yacht 18 feet on the waterline. Built in 1884 for Thomas Trocke to race in Dublin Bay, she was a perfect example of ‘plank on edge’ design greatly over canvassed with an overall length of 22 feet, only five feet wide and with a 15 foot bowsprit. This type of yacht soon became obsolete and the Dublin Bay class ceased racing. Vagrant remained in Irish waters, eventually being laid up near Dun Laoghaire. In 1979 Hal Sisk, Chairman of the National Maritime Museum of Ireland, discovered her and undertook painstaking restoration at the Jack Tyrell Yard at Arklow (the same yard that built Gipsy Moth for Sir Francis Chichester). To celebrate her 100th birthday, she was sailed back across the Irish Sea where she joined the fleet of the preserved boats at the Scottish Maritime Museum. The History of the Fife yard and the yachts they created serves to document the rise of yachting as a royal sport. The Industrial Revolution brought about a population with greater leisure time and vastly increased wealth. With this wealth came a desire to move out of the smogfilled cities, and numerous villas sprang up along the shores of the Clyde estuary for use in the summer months. Time spent in these villas encouraged the wealthy to take to the water and yachting soon became a passion of many of the great industrialists: with this came the development of smart clubs with active racing.
EDWARD ALCOCK Small full-length portrait in of a Peeress wearing an ermine-trimmed white dress, in an interior with her pet dog Oil on canvas Unframed: 30 x 25 in (76.2 x 63.5cm) Framed: 371/2 x 32 in (94 x 81.3cm) P1H0178
Alcock was an itinerant artist and miniaturist based in Bristol His earliest signed and dated painting is a portrait dated 1757, painted in Bath He exhibited at both the Royal Academy and the Society of Artists until the year of his death Works can be found in the Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery as well as in the National Portrait Gallery
Edward Alcock’s date of birth is unrecorded, but he is presumably identical with the child of that name who was baptised on 4 May 1738 at Tewkesbury, Gloucestershire, the son of Edward and Margaret Alcock. He was an itinerant artist whose home town by 1769 was Bristol. Thomas Chatterton (17521770), the tragic Romantic poetic genius and mediaevalist (who committed suicide a year later in an impoverished garret in London), wrote a fulsome poem on “Mr Alcock of Bristol, an excellent miniature painter” in that year, roughly the date of the present painting. His full-length portraits, like this one, are much in the style of Arthur Devis, who, like Alcock, worked in all parts of the country. His works can be found in Birmingham, where he lived in 1760 and where he painted Chandos Leigh (Stoneleigh Abbey), as well as in the National Portrait Gallery. He occasionally painted on a larger scale, notably the portrait of the poet William Shenstone and his dog Lucy (1760; NPG), which depicts him on a portico in an elegant pose owing much to Pompeo Batoni, but with the Midlands town of Halesowen in the background. Alcock’s earliest signed and dated painting is a portrait dated 1757 painted in Bath, and the latest is dated 1774; however, he continued to exhibit at the Royal Academy and the Society of Artists until the year of his death in 1778. His first London exhibit had been in 1762.
SAMUEL HENRY ALKEN A gentleman cantering on his grey shooting pony holding his shotgun, accompanied by his two dogs Signed lower right “H. Alken” Oil on canvas, Painted circa 1850 Unframed: 14 x 20in (35.5 x 50.8cm) Framed: 181/4 x 241/4 in (46.4 x 61.6cm) Contained in a giltwood frame P2I0072
More usually referred to as Henry Alken Junior, Alken belonged to a family of painters whose subject matter covered all aspects of popular field sports and country life Originally of Danish decent, the family was famous in the latter 18th century for its skill as carvers and gilders Painted c.1850, this picture dates from the height of Alkens’ powers His work was very often engraved and is still to this day being reproduced
Samuel Henry Alken (1810-1894) (more usually called Henry Alken Junior) was the son of the sporting painter Henry Alken Snr (1785-1851) by whom he was trained, and whose subjectmatter he imitated. The Alken family were of Danish descent, having settled in England in the earlier part of the 18th century. The family was famous in the latter 18th century for its skill as carvers and gilders, and they were employed by many of the grandest patrons (eg the Duke of Bedford at Woburn) and most famous architects (Chambers, Adam etc). The change of direction to sporting art came at the very end of the century with the two sons of the carver and gilder Sefferin Alken: Samuel Snr. and Henry Snr. The family business involved numerous members over a period of nearly a century, much in the same way that the Sartorius family had been so prolific as sporting painters in the mid-Georgian era. Their subject matter covers all aspects of popular field sports and country life – hunting, shooting, fishing (occasionally), coaching – and a few more esoteric interests such as badgerbaiting and rat-catching – which were faithfully reproduced with a lively palette and a good humour. Very many of the family's pictures were engraved, and they are still endlessly reproduced today in the form of place-mats and Christmas cards etc. The most skilled of the family was Henry Snr., though at its best, the work of his son Henry Jnr. Is scarcely to be distinguished from that of the father. Later in his career, though, from about 1870, the son's work becomes much more routine in quality and hackneyed in execution. The present painting is from his
better earlier period, and may be dated on costume to the period around 1850-60. It is noteworthy that the sportsman is still carrying a flintlock muzzle-loading fowling piece (the ramrod and lock are clearly visible) so that the painting belongs to the era before the widespread adoption of the breech-loading shotgun in the 1860's – a type of gun which remains largely unchanged today. Shooting from ponies was popular with sportsmen in the early Autumn, when these steadiest of creatures were ridden over stubble in pursuit of the grey partridge – so much more common then than today. It called for a remarkably confident pony and an equally sanguine sportsman, as, inevitably, shooting accidents on horseback (as attested by the occasional Alken humourous engraving) were far from unknown. The present picture shows a sportsman in the morning hurrying to the field accompanied by his two dogs, one a pointertype and the other a black-and-tan spaniel, a rather unusual combination for this type of shooting which was usually undertaken with setters. The scene is in October, with the leaves beginning to turn brown and fall.
COPLESTONE WARRE BAMPFYLDE A distant view of Rome, with figures by a lake Signed lower left corner “17CWB74” (the CWB in ligature) Oil on canvas, circa 1774 Unframed: 371/2 x 53in (95.3 x 134.6cm) Framed: 461/2 x 621/4 in (118.1 x 158.1cm) Contained in its original English Georgian “Carlo Maratta” frame P2H0265
Bampfylde was a west country gentleman and Grand Tourist, influenced by Vernet He travelled around Rome with caricaturist, landscapist and Cicerone, Thomas Patch (1725-1782), who painted his portrait He exhibited at both the Royal Academy and the Society of Artists between 1761 and 1783 His works reveal a depth of scholarship, technique and understanding quite at home with such contemporaries as William Marlow and George Lambert He was widely engraved by both Francis Vivares (a notably severe critic of the art of landscape) and by Benazech
Bampfylde was born in 1720, the scion of an ancient Somerset family, who resided at the great mansion at Hestercombe for many generations. Like so many prosperous English country gentlemen in that art-obsessed age, he undertook the Grand Tour to Italy, where he was part of a group of Dilettanti in Rome who formed vast collections of ancient and modern art. He travelled around Rome with caricaturist, landscapist, and Cicerone, Thomas Patch (1725-1782), who painted his portrait. Where exactly Bampfylde received his artistic training is obscure, though as a landowner and Gentleman, he would have had access to the greatest collections in England – most notably, local West Country Collections at Stourhead and Longleat. His academic career, though, is better recorded: he matriculated at St. John's College, Oxford on 27th February 1737, aged 17. His abilities as a landscape painter, in all probability were influenced by the work of Vernet, who he
would have met in Rome (and with whom Patch himself worked for six years). Indeed, there survive a small number of landscapes by Bampfylde, as in the present example, which strongly call to mind the idealised post-Claudian feeling of Roman Landscape painting in the eighteenth century. These paintings are ill-served by the ascription of being by a “gentlemanamateur”: they reveal a depth of scholarship, technique and understanding quite at home with such contemporaries as William Marlow and George Lambert. They have a lyrical and evocative quality which reflects the English passion for Italian culture in the 18th century. Two prime examples of these are at Stourhead (The National Trust), and another, still in the Bampfylde/Poltimore family collection, is described by its owner as “quite lovely; as good as anything by his Professional Contemporaries”. This latter painting was exhibited at the Royal Academy, entitled,
Ivy Bridge, in Devonshire (1771, number 235), and is on a large scale. Bampfylde was an occasional “Honorary Exhibitor” at the Royal Academy and its precursor, The Society of Artists, between 1761 and 1783. The “honorary” status of his exhibits identified him as a Gentleman rather than a Journeyman: such social distinctions were more than mere niceties in the 18th century. The titles of his exhibits show that he was both landscapist and “history” painter (he showed an Aeneas and Achates in the Lybian Forest, now lost, at the RA in 1783). Apart from his work in oils on canvas, Bampfylde was also an accomplished watercolourist and topographical draughtsman, whose work was considered of sufficient quality and interest to be engraved and published by both Francis Vivares (a notably severe critic of the art of landscape) and by Benazech. In 1780, he made a sketching tour of the Lake District, in search of The Sublime, and made his
own etchings from the sketches he made on the spot. He also made a number of humorous illustrations for Anstey's “Election Ball” of 1776. Examples of his work in these genres are to be found in the British Museum, and the Exeter Museum, as well as in a number of private collections in the West Country. Bampfylde also collaborated with his friend Richard Phelps (1710-1785), himself a portrait painter with a good practice in his native Somerset – he had land holdings at Porlock, not far from Hestercombe, the Bampfylde estate. Sir Ellis Waterhouse describes him as a “provincial Highmore”, and examples of his work are to be found at Stourhead (in conjunction with Bampfylde), at The Bristol City Art Gallery and at the Luttrell family House, Dunster Castle (now National Trust) which are documented in Sir H-C Maxwell-Lyte's A History of Dunster (1909). Phelps himself exhibited at The Society of Artists in London, though his career was largely confined to the West Country.
Bampfylde's collaboration with Phelps is exemplified by the astonishing life-size painting of the two artists with their horses, which formerly hung in the hall at Hestercombe, the family seat, until sold after the death of the artist's great-niece, in the sale of the contents of Hestercombe 8-11 November 1872 (now Private Collection, Radnorshire).
LUKE SULLIVAN View of the house, park and farm at Woburn Farm in Surrey Oil on canvas Unframed: 243/4 x 45 in (60.3 x 114.3cm) Framed: 30 x 52 in (76.2 x 132.1cm) Subject engraved (1759) by Luke Sullivan: repr. in The Picturesque Garden in Europe, J D Hunt, 2002, page 49 P2I0025
Owned by Philip Southcote and part constructed by William Kent, Woburn Farm was highly influential in disseminating the idea of the landscape garden, it is now occupied by St George's College, and some features still survive Sullivan was born in County Louth, Ireland, in 1705 His initial training was as an engraver and watercolourist but soon after his move to England, he was taken up by Hogarth, and was the engraver of the celebrated March to Finchley Sullivan was a member, and subsequently director, of the Society of Artists from 1764 -1770
Luke Sullivan (1705-1771) was born in County Louth, Ireland, in 1705. His father was employed by the Duke of Beaufort as a groom, and the young Sullivan removed to England early in his life, and was encouraged by the Duke in his interest in the arts. He received his initial training as an engraver and watercolourist, his earliest known work being a View of the Battle of Culloden published in 1746 after a design by Anton Heckel. Soon afterwards, he was taken up by Hogarth, and was the engraver of the celebrated March to Finchley.
He also produced numerous topographical views and made something of a speciality of painting picturesque views of Gentlemen's seats. He also had a good trade as a miniaturist. He was a member, and subsequently director, of the Society of Artists from 1764 -1770. He seems to have attracted some notoriety as a bon-viveur; Strickland suggests that he died as a result of his dissipations in the White Bear Tavern in Piccadilly. Philip Southcote (1698-1758) purchased the small property known as Woburn
(sometimes Wooburn) Farm, at Addlestone, near Runnymede, Surrey in 1735. It was there that he created the original “ferme ornee” (‘decorative farm’), a term invented by Stephen Switzer in 1741 to describe what was to become one of the most sought-after types of English landscape gardens. Woburn Farm's grotto and architectural follies, arches and gateways, were in part designed by William Kent, including the existing rusticated entrance that marks the entrance from the public
road. They soon attracted stylish visitors who made the serpentine circuit of the garden, passing from feature to feature: "all my design at first was to have a garden on the middle high ground and a walk all round my farm, for convenience as well as pleasure" Southcote wrote. A feature of Woburn Farm was a walk planted with broom, roses, lilac, columbine, peonies and sweet-william which wound its way through the fields, for it remained a working farm. Like William Shenstone's Arcadian garden, The
Leasowes, Woburn Farm was highly influential in disseminating the idea of the landscape garden; it received an extended description in Thomas Whateley's Observations on Modern Gardening. In a letter in 1751, Horace Walpole wrote rather peevishly of Lancelot “Capability” Brown's landscaping at Warwick Castle, "The castle is enchanting; the view pleased me more than I can express, the river Avon tumbles down a cascade at the foot of it. It is well laid out by one Brown who has set up on a few ideas of Kent and Mr Southcote." Later in life, summing
up his thoughts in his Essay On Modern Gardening, Walpole divided types of gardens in the “modern” naturalistic style into three: “into the garden that connects itself with a park, into the ornamented farm, and into the forest or savage garden”. To Southcote, Walpole gives the credit for the idealised farm. Southcote was a friend of leading writers and gardeners of his day, including Pope, Lord Burlington, Lord Petre and William Kent. His house is now occupied by St George's College, and some features survive.
The Sartorius Family
The Sartorius family of sporting artists were descended from Jacob Christopher (fl. 16941773), an engraver from Nuremberg. Little is known of the circumstances in which this family came to England. They were however over four generations to produce an artistic document of sporting and country life that today serves as both a decorative and interesting overview of country pursuits over a hundred year period. Each generation made London their base, but with the nature of their subjects and commissions they spent much of their time at the great sporting events. Here they mixed with the gentry who were to provide them with encouragement and patronage that was to allow them to remain true itinerant sporting artists. John Sartorius (1700-1780) produced many portraits of famous racehorses. His first major commission was from Mr Thomas Panton in about 1722 the subject Molly a celebrated Mare ‘wich had never been beaten on the turf, except in the match that cost her her life’. The success of this commission brought about other work such as Looby (1735) for the Duke of Bolton. He exhibited one picture at the Society of Artists, sixty-two at the Free Society of Artists and one at the Royal Academy. He was the father of Francis Sartorius, whose style is very similar. Francis Sartorius (1734-1804) was John’s son and pupil. His early training with his father was followed by a period spent in the studios of Thomas Butler, based in Pall Mall, whose slightly wooden, but charming style influenced him. Francis developed his own style using simple compositions and colour skillfully, creating a timeless and evocative air of charm. He worked for patrons such as the Duke of Cumberland, the Duke of Grafton, the Marquis of Rockingham and King George III, from whom he had two commissions. This greatly enhanced his reputation, and he exhibited at the Royal Academy from 1773-1791. He was a regular contributor to the Sporting Magazine, four engravings of his work appear in volumes ii-vi (1793-1795). Thirty-eight of his works were shown at various London galleries, twelve of which were at the Royal Academy . When he died in March 1804, aged seventy, he was living at 17 Gerrard Street in Soho. When the
JACOB CHRISTOPHER SARTORIUS (fl. 1694-1773)
JOHN SARTORIUS (1700-1780)
FRANCIS SARTORIUS (1734-1804)
JOHN NOST SARTORIUS (c. 1755-1828)
JOHN F SARTORIUS (c. 1775-1831)
administration was granted to his only surviving son of his two marriages it was valued at just £100. His great productivity seems not to have been compensated by his inability to charge high prices. (He was receiving 15 guineas for a large canvas when middle ranked portrait artists like William Beechey were receiving 100 guineas for a similar sized human portrait). John Nost Sartorius (c. 1755-1828), the most famous artist of the family, continued in his father’s footsteps, producing equestrian and country life scenes. He met many of his clients at the Newmarket races, including some of the most famous aristocratic sportsmen of the age: Lords Derby, Foley, Kingston, the breeders and trainers Christopher Wilson and Sir Charles Bunbury, but the grandest of all was the Prince of Wales. His works are to be found in many country houses around England, showing that he was, like his father, itinerant. He exhibited seventy-four pictures at the Royal Academy between 1781 and 1824, and engravings of his works by J. Walker, J. Webb and others appeared in the Sporting Magazine from 17951827. Despite the exclusively rural content of his paintings, he lived the greater part of his life in Soho. In 1787 he is recorded as living at 2 Spur Street, Leicester Square. In the later part of his life he moved to the then almost rural delights of Kennington. It was in a house near the famous Oval Cricket Ground that he died. Rather like his father Francis, he would have appeared, despite
FRANCIS SARTORIUS (1777-after 1808) MARINE PAINTER
his vast output of work and the wealthy circles in which he moved, to have died a poor man. His estate was valued at £20 at the time of his death. He had two sons, John Francis Sartorius (c. 1775-1831) who continued to paint equestrian and country pictures, and Francis Sartorius (1777- after 1808) who was the first of the Sartorius family to depart from the country subjects and turn his attention to marine subjects. Neither of them had the same success as their father in regard to their patrons, but John F exhibited at the Royal Academy from 1802-1827, sending sixteen pictures in total. He had his work reproduced as engravings in the Sporting Magazine along with his father, but it is very difficult to differentiate between the two as their style is very similar, and often works were just signed ‘Sartorius’. The Sartorius family were important in producing images of English Country Life, and their works provide a catalogue of charming images. They all have a similar feel to them, but manage to capture the charm and characters of the animals. The list of aristocratic gentlemen who patronised them indicates the high regard and reputation the family held.
We are grateful to David Fuller for his research on the Sartorius family.
JOHN NOST SARTORIUS A Hunt in Full Cry Signed lower left, ‘J.N.Sartorius Pinxt 1781’ Oil on canvas Unframed: 271/4 x 35 in (69.2 x 88.9 cm) Framed: 331/2 x 411/4 in (85 x 105 cm)
JOHN NOST SARTORIUS Sir Charles Bunbury’s Black racehorse “Smolensko” with Tom Goodisson up Oil on canvas, painted circa 1813 Unframed: 24 x 30 in (61 x 76.2cm) Framed: 301/2 x 36 in (77.5 x 91.4cm) In a carved and giltwood neo-classical frame P2H0229
Smolensko was a dark bay colt foaled in 1810, bred by and the property of Sir Charles Bunbury. Got by Sorcerer out of Wowski (bred by Sir Ferdinand Poole in 1797) by Mentor, out of Maria, by Herod, out of Lisette, by Old Snap, out of Miss Windsor, by the Godolphin Arabian. 1813 Newmarket (1st Spring Meeting) won the 2,000 Guineas at 7-4 against beating the Duke of Grafton's Music, winner of the Oaks, Tom Goodisson up; Newmarket Stakes of 775 Guineas, beating Mr Goddard's Scheherazade (2-1 on Smolensko); Epsom won The Derby stakes for 1,425 Guineas (Goodisson up) beating Lord Jersey's Caterpillar Grosvenor's. (Evens Smolensko); 1814 Newmarket (Craven Meeting) beat Sir G. Armytage's Tiger for 200 guineas the match (2-1 on Tiger); (1st Spring Meeting) Handicap for 450 Guineas (5-4 against Smolensko) This was his last appearance on the Turf, when he was retired to stud. The Derby of 1813 took place amidst scenes of “indescribable excitement. Large bodies of horsemen were galloping furiously in all directions. Several collisions took place, resulting in many falls; a few gigs were
overturned and smashed; a Phaeton was also overthrown... Such a scene was never witnessed on any racecourse. A very large sum of money changed hands on this Derby. Before the off, Sir Charles Bunbury was offered 4,000 guineas (an enormous sum in those days) for Smolensko, and subsequently 5,000 guineas, both being refused” (Portraits of Celebrated Race Horses) “The moment Smolensko appeared, there was a burst of admiration on all sides. His fine eye, the splendid symmetry of his limbs, the grace and power of his action, and his perfect docility, became the object of comment and approbation. At starting a fine burst took place, each striving for the lead, which Solyman obtained. Smolensko, however, soon shot ahead, the rest keeping close at his heels, Lord Jersey's Caterpillar being nearly level with him. They all went at a very hot pace. Coming to Tattenham Corner, Caterpillar passed Smolensko, upon whom Goodisson had kept a tight rein. 100 yards from the Winning post, Goodisson gave Smolensko his head, when he shot past Caterpillar like lightning, winning easily by a length”. (Sporting Magazine, June 1813.) NOTE Another portrait of Smolensko with
Goodisson up was with Lane Fine Art Ltd in 1990 (canvas, 14 x 18 inches, signed and dated 1813)
JOHN NOST SARTORIUS Two gentlemen shooting over setters in a wooded landscape Oil on canvas, painted circa 1790 Unframed: 16 x 231/4 in (40.6 x 59cm) Framed: 21 x 281/2 in (53.3 x 72.4cm) In a good carved and gilded frame P2H0341
The subject matter of the present painting places it chronologically at the end of the 18th century, when the sport of pheasant shooting took place over pointers and setters rather than as driven game. Pheasants are birds of the woodland-edge in their natural habitat, and Sartorius has placed his two sportsmen and their dogs in exactly that setting. Pheasants
are not native to the UK (despite their now being amongst the most common of our birds) but they seem to have been introduced by the Romans. They were amongst the most valued of birds for shooters in the days of the flintlock sporting gun, as they were much rarer than the usual English quarry, partridges.
FRANCIS SARTORIUS Lord Milsington’s bay racehorse “Laburnum” with Jockey up at Newmarket Signed and dated 1782 Oil on canvas Unframed: 25 x 30 in (63.5 x 76.2cm) Framed: 30 x 35 in (76.2 x 88.9cm) In a good carved and gilded original Georgian frame Inscribed with the identity of the horse: “Laburnum, by Herod, beat Flash by Herod. 8 st(one) each 200 guineas October 2nd 1781” PROVENANCE The property of the family the Princes Esterhazy since at least the mid-19th century. P2H0545
Laburnum was a bay colt bred in 1774 by Herod out of Young Hag, the latter bred by Lord Portmore in 1761, got by Skim, her dam, Hag (Hydra’s dam) by Crab out of Ebony by Flying Childers. Laburnum was owned by Lord Portmore’s son William Charles, Viscount Milsington (1747-1823) who was a keen supporter of the Turf. He succeeded his father as Earl of Portmore in 1785.
The unusual harlequin colours worn by the jockey (who is probably William Smith) are those of Charles Ogilvy who acquired the horse from Lord Milsington. He was the owner of a number of good horses in the 1770’s and 80’s, including Trentham, who was painted by George Stubbs.
JOHN BOULTBEE Edward Rushton of Slade House, Levenshulme, Master of Ye Southern Hound Hunt Signed and indistinctly dated 1811 Oil on canvas Unframed: 28 x 36 in (71.1 x 91.4 cm) Framed: 35 x 423/4 in (88.7 x 108.7cm) PROVENANCE by descent in the Needham family, latterly in the Channel Islands. P2H0460
Boultbee worked in Leicestershire, Derbyshire and finally in Lancashire, where his equestrian portraits were greatly valued Modelled after the works of Stubbs, he has a solidity and knowledge of anatomy which is more than occasionally missing from the work of his contemporaries Rushton was a Manchester industrialist and shareholder in The Manchester Bank, which was the first untitled bank established in the city of Manchester
John Boultbee (1753-1812), a twin with his brother Thomas, was born at Osgathorpe in Lincolnshire in June 1753. Both boys were destined for a career in the arts, and it is tempting, considering John’s painting technique, to surmise that he modelled himself on the work of George Stubbs - though we know little of his formal training. He worked from the same address as his twin in Oxford Street, London, until about 1785, when they went their separate ways. John worked subsequently in Leicestershire, Derbyshire and finally in Lancashire, where his equestrian portraits were greatly valued. He is amongst the most satisfactory of Georgian painters of horse portraits, and has a solidity and knowledge of anatomy which is more than occasionally missing from the work of his contemporaries. The present painting is entirely typical of his work from the last years of the 18th century onwards, with its accurate draughtsmanship and gentle suffused light. It was executed in the year before Boultbee died, and illustrates the continuing high quality of his work. Edward Rushton was a Manchester industrialist of the early years of the industrial revolution, where he was involved in the burgeoning cotton trade. He was born about 1760, and was married to Mary, nee Ollivant (b.1765), in Manchester Cathedral on 17th August 1786. He was an investor in The Manchester Bank, which was the first untitled bank established in the city of Manchester by four partners Messrs Allen, Byrom, Segwick and Place. The Bank and its partners prospered until the year 1788. At this time there was great financial hardship in the region, arising from the collapse of the cotton trade after the American War of Independence, with over 360 bankruptcies recorded in that year. The Manchester Bank also succumbed and recorded a loss of £360,000. However the branch in London
was still operating and had to be informed. Allen, the only surviving original partner, and the existing shareholders held a meeting in St Ann’s Square where it was decided that they should all draw lots to determine who should ride down to London, as drafts had to be presented to the London branch to see if they were to be dishonoured and whether there were to be instructions to close the Manchester branch. The choice fell upon Mr Edward Rushton who with his father and brother had considerable financial interests at stake. Rushton, a noted horseman, left Manchester the same day, riding his own horse as far as Derby. From then onwards getting relays at the Inns on the road to London, where he arrived at 10am the following morning. The ride of almost 200 miles in 21 hours was deemed a fine, albeit ultimately futile, performance: the bills were refused, and the bank failed. This represented the low point of Rushton’s finances, and in the ensuing years he prospered, buying himself a large house in the then rural village of Rusholme, on the outskirts of Manchester. Rusholme was subsequently to be absorbed into greater Manchester, but in 1844 still consisted of a township of some 960 acres. In that year, the executors of the recentlydeceased Rushton were among the main freeholders in the area. His fortune passed to his only daughter who had married John Needham in 1813. Like so many “new men” of the age, Rushton had enthusiastically adopted country ways despite his very urban fortune, and became master of a local pack which still used the old “southern mouthed” hounds.
FRANCIS COTES Portrait of a Gentleman in a red coat with blue collar trimmed with gold His arms folded across his chest and holding a glove in his right hand which rests atop a cane Signed lower right and dated 1763 Oil on canvas Unframed: 35 x 27 in (89 x 68.5cm) Framed: 45 x 37 in (114.3 x 94cm) Contained in its original carved and gilded Georgian swept frame Lionel Clark, London; (his sale Sotheby’s, July 24th 1929 (lot 48), bought by Asscher; Leo M. Flesh, Piqua, Ohio (his sale Christie’s November 17th 1967 (lot 94) bought Leyland; Anon sale, Sotheby’s, March 12 1969 (lot 134); Philip Reiff, Philadelphia LITERATURE Edward Mead Johnson, Francis Cotes (Phaidon, 1976) p.69 no.125 (as a portrait of Sir Hector Monro) PROVENANCE
Cotes was initially taught in pastels, in which medium he is certainly the greatest English exponent of the 18th century From 1765 he took a large house and studio at 32 Cavendish Square, and established himself as the first serious fashionable rival to Reynolds and Gainsborough He was prominent in the Society of Artists and was a Founding Member of the Royal Academy George III chose Cotes over Reynolds to paint a portrait of Queen Charlotte, which was exhibited at the Academy
Francis Cotes, RA (1726-1770) was the son of a pharmacist, and the eldest brother of the miniaturist Samuel Cotes. He was apprenticed to the portrait painter George Knapton in the 1740’s, and was at first confined to pastels, in which medium he is certainly the greatest English exponent of the 18th century. His first oil paintings date from as late as 1753, and he did not seriously take up the medium until four years later. From 1765 he took a large house and studio at 32 Cavendish Square, and established himself as the first serious fashionable rival to Reynolds and Gainsborough. He was prominent in the Society of Artists and was a Foundation Member of the Royal Academy. He was perhaps the greatest rival to Sir Joshua Reynolds in London during the 1760’s and enjoyed a great critical success: How happy Cotes? Thy skill shall shine, Unrivall’d in the class, almost divine... Thus the critic of The London Chronicle praised the virtues of Cotes' portrait of Queen Charlotte: the King had chosen Cotes above Reynolds (whom he roundly loathed) to be patronised and to have a Royal portrait exhibited at the Academy, a severe blow to the President's amore-propre.
The present painting dates from the period of Cotes maturation into a fully developed portrait painter in oils, and illustrates amply the artist’s clarity of conception, vigorous free brushwork and clarity and intensity of tone. It has for at least 80 years been identified as a portrait of Sir Hector Monro, the distinguished soldier and statesman. The identification may be safely discarded on several grounds: the costume the sitter wears is civilian, not military, uniform (information from Stephen Wood FSA); Monro was in India 1759-1765 when the portrait was painted in London in 1762; the portrait was sold with a companion piece of “Lady Monro” at Sotheby’s in 1929, but Monro never in fact married.
WILLIAM HENRY DAVIS ‘Pincher’ Signed and dated ‘W Davis Pin* 1832’ Oil on canvas Unframed: 17 x 21in (43.7 x 53.3cm) Framed: 231/2 x 373/4 in (59.5 x 70.5cm) PROVENANCE painted for John Scott, 1st Earl of Eldon (1751-1838), and thence by descent to the present. P2H0022
Davis was appointed court painter to both King William IV (1837) and Queen Victoria (1839) He is most known for his pictures of prize cattle, and his works were often engraved Notable clients included Earl Rivers, Lord Foley and the Royal Family This picture initially belonged to the late Lord Chancellor Eldon
William Henry Davis (fl.1803-1849) was the son of Richard Davis, huntsman to King George’s Harriers at Windsor Castle. He specialised in animal portraiture, notably of Prize Cattle, but was also active in the other branches of sporting painting. He enjoyed a widespread and high quality patronage, working for such patrons as Earl Rivers, the Earl of Ilchester, Lord Foley and several members of the Royal Family. He was appointed Animal Painter to King William IV in 1837, and to Queen Victoria in 1839. His best work, which is well observed and highly finished, dates from the period 1825-1835; his later work becomes rather more perfunctory in execution. Numerous paintings of his were engraved. With an inscription on the reverse by the 2nd Earl of Eldon - ‘Pincher, a German Spaniel. By W. Davis./This Portrait of Pincher, a German Spaniel, painted by W. Davis in 1832, belonged to the late Lord Chancellor Eldon, at the time of/whose decease Janry 13th 1838 there was in the frame of this picture a memorandum in his own handwriting, referring to this and/to another picture, and consisting of the words ‘Portraits of Pincher and Neptune, Dogs formerly belonging to a much-beloved Son.’/The Dogs had formerly belonged to his son the Honble William Henry John Scott who died in 1832, and latterly to Lord Chancellor/Eldon himself. Pincher died on 19 May 1840, and was buried at Encombe in Dorset./Eldon. 1840.’
LIONEL DALHOUSIE ROBERTSON EDWARDS Three portraits of the Hon. Edward John Spencer (1924-1992), later 8th Earl Spencer Pencil drawings on paper in their original mounts and frames, sizes: 1) 213/4 x 171/4 in (55.6 x 44.1cm) ; 2) 171/4 x 22 in (44 x 55.7cm); 3) 171/4 x 22 in (44 x 55.7cm) Each signed in monogram and dated 1934 PROVENANCE by family descent P2I0091
Lionel Edwards’ lifetime passion was for horses and art, but he began his working career as a reporter and illustrator for the The Graphic and subsequently Punch Edwards’ continued to sketch whilst sourcing horses for the cavalry during the First World War and by its end he was a fully-developed sporting artist His works are of the highest quality of his era, only Munnings, with whom he enjoyed a friendly rivalry for patronage, was his superior Edward John Spencer is perhaps best remembered for escorting his youngest daughter, Diana, up the aisle of St Paul's Cathedral in 1981, during her marriage to the Prince of Wales Spencer dedicated himself to the upkeep of the great house at Althorp, Northamptonshire – it is now one of the most-visited Country Houses in England
This page, In Althorp Park, walking away from the Hawking Tower; Opposite page, Sitting at rest on a favourite dapple-grey pony in front of the Hawking Tower (top) and In Althorp Park cantering towards the ‘Round Oval’ lake
Lionel Edwards RI., RCA. (1878-1966) was a pupil of Sir A.S. Cope at Hatherley's art school, and of Frank Calderon at the School of Animal Painting in Kensington. His lifetime passion was for horses and art, but he began his working career as a reporter and illustrator for the The Graphic and subsequently Punch. At the outset of the First World War, he joined the Army Remount Service, sourcing horses of all types for the cavalry and for transport. He continued to sketch throughout the war, and at its end he was a fully-developed sporting artist. He was a keen follower of hounds, and he has left us a
treasury of images of most of the great packs of hounds of the English Shires. His works in oils, often worked up from brilliant sketches made on the spot, are of the highest quality of his era: only Munnings, with whom he enjoyed a friendly rivalry for patronage, was his superior. Many of his works were reproduced in books and limited-edition prints, and there is scarcely a country house in England which does not hold one of his widely-disseminated images. He likewise produced the illustrations for many hugely-popular books, including Sketches in Stable and Kennel and his autobiographical
Reminiscences of a Sporting Artist. His only pupil was the gifted sporting painter Peter Biegel. He died in 1966. The present drawings are typical of Edwards' work in his prime: confident, direct and carefully observed, with a real feeling for the pony both at rest and in movement. They were executed on the spot at Althorp. Edward John Spencer was the eldest son of the scholarly Seventh Earl who had dedicated himself to the upkeep of the great house at Althorp, Northamptonshire, cataloguing its contents, and opening it to scholars. His artistic positions including acting as a trustee to the Wallace Collection and chairman of the Victoria and Albert Advisory Council. He was a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries. Familiarly known as Johnny Spencer, Edward John Spencer enjoyed an idyllic childhood at Althorp. He succeeded his father as Eighth Earl in 1975 and was for ten years chairman of the National Association of Boys' Clubs, a member of Northampton Council for 29 years, and a keen amateur photographer. He is perhaps best remembered for escorting his youngest daughter, Diana, up the aisle of St Paul's Cathedral in 1981, during her marriage to the Prince of Wales, despite being only recently recovered from a severe stroke. The curious building in the background is the Hawking Tower in Althorp Park, a building unique in English domestic architecture. It was built by Robert, 1st Lord Spencer of Wormleighton, in 1612-13 with large windows on all sides which gave a prospect of the park for spectators to enjoy the popular sport of hawking. The large building in the background of the last drawing is, of course, Althorp itself, the great Georgian house, a house which was accreted for some 400 years from Jacobean house onwards, under the architectural supervision at various times of such luminaries as Colen Campbell, Roger Morris and Henry Holland. It is presently one of the most-visited Country Houses in England: the Round Oval Lake (seen in the last of the drawings) is the site of the memorial to Diana, Princess of Wales, the focal point of many of these visits.
JAMES WALES The Honourable East India Company’s Fleet at anchor off Bombay, circa 1792 Oil on canvas Unframed: 281/4 x 46 in (73 x 117cm) Framed: 351/4 x 521/2 in (89.5 x 133cm) In a carved and giltwood frame P2H0094
Wales is best known for portraits and topographical views; marine scenes are very rate Born at Peterhead in Aberdeenshire, and after a period of exhibiting at the Royal Academy and the Society of Artists in London during the 1780’s he sought to expand his career by a move to India in 1791 He painted sketches from which Daniell executed his prints of the Indian Durbar He died at Thana in November 1795 while engaged in producing a series of sketches of Elephanta Wales also produced a series of prints of Bombay Harbour which relate closely to the present composition
James Wales was born at Peterhead in Aberdeenshire in 1747. He received his initial training at the Marischal College in Scotland, and his main works were portraits and topographical views. He moved to London at some point in the early 1780’s and thereafter exhibited a few paintings at the Royal Academy and the Society of Artists. In 1791, he sought to expand his career by a move to India, where the successful precedent of a number of artists encouraged him to improve his financial prospects. He was soon employed as a portrait painter by the local Grandees, both Indian and British. He painted sketches from which Daniell executed his prints of the Indian Durbar, which has been described as “unrivalled perhaps for oriental grouping, character and costume”. He worked with Daniell at the excavations at Ellora, and 24 of his drawings are reproduced in Daniell’s “Oriental Scenery”. He died at Thana in November 1795 while engaged in producing a series of sketches of Elephanta. Marine scenes by Wales are very rare, though the attribution of the present painting seems to be secure by analogy with a large painting offered at Sotheby’s New York on 25 January 2001 (lot 150) entitled James Wales: A view of Bombay Harbour with moored sailing vessels and a dry dock with government house beyond.
ABRAHAM PETHER The burning of the Old Drury Lane Theatre, 24th February 1809 Signed and dated Oil on canvas Unframed: 281/2 x 41in (72.4 x 104cm) Framed: 341/2 x 471/4 in (87.6 x 120cm) P2H0373
Pether was a pupil of George Smith, one of the three Smith brothers who were notable landscape painters This painting shows the Drury Lane Theatre on fire, as viewed from Cowbridge, Pimlico, looking north across the river Tyburn The location can be determined by the placement of the well known London landmarks such as St Paul’s, Wesminster Abbey and St Bride’s Buckingham House (now Buckingham Palace) is the large house visible to the left, behind the hoist Pether made two versions of this scene, the other known piece is in the Guildhall Art Gallery, London
One of a family of five painters, Abraham Pether was born in Chichester in 1756, the son of the mezzotinter, William Pether. He was a pupil of George Smith, one of the three Smith brothers who were notable landscape painters. He initially painted in his tutor’s style, then developed it further by incorporating some elements of Richard Wilson. He moved to London and began an industrious and fruitful career showing at the annual exhibitions in the capital. On the night of the 24 February 1809 when the Drury Lane Theatre caught fire, its owner, Richard Brinsley Sheridan (1751-1816), was at the House of Commons, which voted an immediate adjournment when the disastrous news arrived; though Sheridan himself protested against such an interruption of public business on account of his own or any other private interests. However, he hurried to the theatre, and whilst seeing his own property in flames, sat down with his friend Barry in a coffee-house opposite to a bottle of port, coolly remarking, in answer to some friendly expostulation, that
it was “hard if a man could not drink a glass of wine by his own fire!” This painting shows the Drury Lane Theatre on fire, as viewed from Cowbridge, Pimlico, looking north. It shows a lost view of London as the river shown is not the Thames, but part of the River Tyburn which was thought to come out into the Thames near Westminster. This painting proves that in fact a river ran through the marsh area known as Pollenstock and into the Thames at Merflete (now the area of Vauxhall Bridge). There is a record of an old bridge around Vincent Square, Rochester Row, which was called Cowbridge, and this would appear to be the artist's vantage point looking out over the Bulinga Fen (marshland area). By triangulating the landmarks of the inferno of Old Drury Lane Theatre, St Paul's Cathedral and Westminster Abbey (and all the City churches), we can see that the the Tyburn went through the gardens of Buckingham House (now Buckingham Palace) the large house visible to the left, behind the hoist. The River Tyburn is said to have been navigable as far as Regent's Park making it a very useful artery for goods into central London. Pether seems to have been very accurate in his topography of this painting and the events it portrays. He had been living in Bridge Row, Chelsea, close to the site of his vantage point, for this painting and he surely witnessed the event first hand. He made two versions of this scene, the other known piece is in the Guildhall Art Gallery, London. Although this painting was conceived to show the drama of the event, it actually serves as a historical record, as there is very little accurate documentation of this area of London. Ref: The Lost Rivers of London by Nicholas Barton, 1962.
ENGLISH SCHOOL Portrait of a Gentleman Pianist Oil on canvas Unframed: 29 3/4 x 251/4 in (75.6 x 64.1cm) Framed: 341/2 x 301/2 in (87.6 x 77.5cm) In its original lacquer frame P2H0181
This painting has been somewhat of an enigma for many years. Initially thought to be a William Nicholson portrait of a musician, various theories have emerged. At the time of the publication of this catalogue, research is still being undertaken. The current academic view is that it is by an English hand, but as yet, authorship has not been definitely ascertained. The most valid theory suggests that this could be a portrait of the French pianist Alfred Cortot (1877-1962). The musician wears what is called a ‘high imperial collar’, popular in formal wear from 1890-1910, which would be consistent with Cortot’s dates. In 1902, the twenty-five-year-old Cortot conducted the first performance of Wagner's Götterdämmerung in Paris, and later Parsifal. He also performed the Paris premières of Brahms' German Requiem, Liszt's Saint Elizabeth Oratorio, and even Beethoven's Missa Solemnis which, amazing as it sounds, took eighty-five years to reach Paris from Vienna. Besides this, he championed many contemporary French works both as a conductor and pianist.
player. He gave up that position in 1917, feeling that his busy concert schedule had made it impossible to devote sufficient uninterrupted periods to teaching. In 1919 he founded the École Normale de Musique, assembling a faculty of famous musicians. As director, Cortot taught a summer course in interpretation, which became famous. Among his outstanding pupils were Clara Haskil, Gina Bachauer, and Dinu Lipatti. Alfred Cortot continued performing piano around the world, he gave lecture recitals, and also guest conducted many orchestras. He also continued to premiere new French piano music. Although Cortot was technically a highly wayward pianist, he succeeded in infusing his readings of the Romantic repertoire with a rare insight and interpretation.
At age 27, in 1904, Cortot became the conductor of the Concerts Populaires at Lille, and the following year he joined with cellist Pablo Casals and violinist Jacques Thibaud to form one of the greatest permanently established piano trios, one which became a model of its type, and they toured frequently. This drew him back to the piano, which he had never given up despite his fame as a conductor. In 1907 he joined the faculty of the Paris Conservatory, teaching piano, but remained very active as a solo pianist and chamber music
WILLIAM GEORGE JENNINGS A view of Westhamble, (sic) Surrey, with a figure walking on a path Signed with initials “WJG” and dated 1803 Oil on canvas Unframed: 171/2 x 27in (44.5 x 68.5cm) Framed: 25 x 341/2 in (63.5 x 88cm) In its original carved and gilded frame Collection of Colonel M H Grant Colonel M H Grant The Old English Landscape Painters, (Leigh-on-Sea 1960) Volume VI, page 437 and illustrated plate 461. EXHIBITED Royal Academy, 1803, number 13 (Jennings was an “Honorary Exhibitor”, the style given to Gentlemen Amateurs). PROVENANCE LITERATURE
Jennings was a ‘Gentleman Amateur’ who exhibited at the Royal Academy between 1797 and 1806, and at the Society of Artists in 1830. He was a friend of John Constable and his later works owe much to his influence. Westhamble (or, correctly, Westhumble) is a small village in the picturesque Mole Valley near Dorking, close to Polesden Lacy and Box Hill
William George Jennings (1763-1854) was a gentleman amateur who exhibited at the Royal Academy between 1797 and 1806 and at the Society of British Artists in 1830. His style was modelled on that of Richard Wilson, but his most immediate influence was the Royal Academician Joseph Farington (1747-1821), who met Jennings regularly during this period. Jennings attempted to start a regular exhibition modelled on the Academy in Bath, but the demand for paintings was weaker than he had imagined, and the project soon foundered. He was of independent means, and travelled widely in England painting and sketching topographical scenes from Surrey (as here) to the Lake District and Wales. From at least 1826 he was a friend of John Constable and in the 1830s bought two paintings from him, ‘Yarmouth Jetty’ and ‘Hampstead Heath with a Rainbow’. The latter, painted for Jennings in 1836, is now in the Tate Gallery (N01275; L. Parris, The Tate Gallery Constable Collection, 1981, no.42, repr. in colour). Like Constable, Jennings had a particular attachment to Hampstead Heath. A large collection of his oil sketches and watercolours discovered by his descendant Karen Addenbrooke in 1981 included many representations of the area, some dated 1828, 1831, 1833 and 1834. It is clear from the comparison between the present painting of 1803 and another of his works dated 1831 in the Tate Gallery, (T03349) that there had been a revolution in English Landscape painting in the intervening years, and that the enthusiast who started as a follower of Wilson ended up as an acolyte of Constable. Westhamble (or, correctly, Westhumble) is a small village in the picturesque Mole Valley near Dorking, close to Polesden Lacy and Box Hill. Then, as now, the area was a magnet for people in search of a beautiful landscape within relatively easy distance of London. It attracted painters and tourists alike. In the 1790’s the village was the home of the novelist and diarist Fanny Burney.
GEORGE MORLAND Selling Peas Signed Oil on canvas, circa 1792 Unframed: 28 x 36in (71 x 91.4cm) Framed: 371/2 x 45in (95.3 x 114.3cm) Contained in its original carved and gilded frame PROVENANCE Bought by William Duckworth of Musworth (1795-1876) in 1843 for £34 0s 0d, and thence by family descent until 1987 P2H0090
Morland’s productivity is legendary, and his quality is outstanding; he was especially adept at capturing Rural Genre Scenes He quickly developed a reputation placing him at the forefront of Eighteenth Century English painting and is frequently engraved This work was engraved by E. Bell and published by T. Ladd in 1801, together with a companion piece, 'Selling Cherries'
There are few painters who have suffered the vagaries of critical opinion more than George Morland (17631804); likewise, there are few painters in 18th century England who even approach his marvellous technical ability. He is among the most satisfactory and original painters of Rural Genre, landscape, more and sentimental genre, and scenes from everyday life of the English School. During his brief and tumultuous career, he had both great success (surely no painter has been copied, imitated and faked more than him, especially during his lifetime) and the most sordid and miserable failure (he died in extreme poverty pursued by creditors, an
unreformed alcoholic). Morland's productivity is legendary, and his quality, when not producing potboilers in the last four or five years of his life, is quite outstanding. Morland’s work is remarkable in its execution, and wonderfully true in tone; the drawing is quite outstanding and the freedom of brushwork reminiscent of the best 18th century French painters. As an artist, Morland was idolised in the early part of this century, and his productions were amongst the most valuable of the English School. Largely as a result of the number of secondrate imitations which exist, and by which he has most unfairly been judged, Morland has fallen out of favour in the latter part of the present century. Indeed, the last exhibition devoted to his work took place almost forty years ago. It is now surely time that his work was re-examined and his achievement acknowledged as one of the foremost English painters of his era. Morland was important, too, for forsaking the Patronage system of his century, and painting only those subjects which appealed to him. Though this led to his exploitation by unscrupulous dealers, it did make it possible for the artist to exist in England as a free spirit, unrestrained by the vagaries and whims of a particular patron. The present painting is a prime example of the type of rural genre scene at which Morland excelled, and amply illustrates the artist’s painterly capacities, especially in the free and lucid brushwork.
FREDERICK MACKENZIE An Abbey Interior, possibly Fonthill Pen and ink and watercolour on paper Unframed: 17.5 x 11.6 in (44.5 x 29.5cm) Framed: 261/4 in x 193/4 in (66.7 x 50.2cm)
Frederick Mackenzie was an architectural and topographical draughtsman who produced work for the foremost publishers and engravers of the day, including Britton and Ackermann He was briefly a member of the Oil and Watercolour Society and joined the reconstituted O.W.S. as an Associate in 1822 and as a full member in 1823 Fonthill Abbey, designed for the eccentric collector William Beckford, is the largest private house ever built in the U.K. The tower of the Abbey collapsed under its own weight in 1825, most of the rest of the building was demolished in 1858 although part of the north wing remains
A pupil of J.A. Repton, Frederick Mackenzie (1787-1854) became an architectural and topographical draughtsman, working for many of the foremost publishers and engravers of the day, including Britton and Ackermann. He was briefly a member of the Oil and Watercolour Society and joined the reconstituted O.W.S. as an Associate in 1822 and as a full member in 1823. He was Treasurer of the Society from 1831 until his death. Although he drew a number of Continental subjects after other artists, he seldom, if ever, left England. In the 1830s and 1840s he worked on a number of important publications, including the Memorials of Oxford, 1837 and Memorials of Cambridge, 1841-42. In his later years his skills in drawing for engravers were less in demand, owing to the introduction of photography. His style, which is neat, accurate and attractive, is close to that of the elder Pugin with whom he sometimes worked – they both owe much to the teachings and inspiration of the architect John Nash. He sometimes painted landscapes in a looser manner, reminiscent of Cox. Fonthill Abbey was one of the most remarkable houses ever built in Britain. A romantic folly, it was designed for the eccentric collector William Beckford (1759-1844). With money largely acquired from West Indian sugar plantations, Beckford was fabulously wealthy. Although his family origins were distinctly middle class, he was keen to claim an honourable lineage stretching far back into the Middle Ages. Beckford therefore fabricated a large and noble family tree and chose the Gothic Revival style when rebuilding his house.
added was the tower which was 82.5m tall. The front doors were 10m tall and the frontage of the house was 91m. Running costs were £30,000 a year and it took 950 workers to build. Despite the sheer size, a single servant took care of the building, a Spanish dwarf hired especially to heighten the sense of enormity when he opened the door for guests. Modest doors and windows were juxtaposed with soaring traceried windows, assorted turrets and pinnacles. These jumbled parts together made up a cross plan, with the phenomenal 225 foot tower at its heart, based on Ely Cathedral’s octagon. The interior, although luxurious, supposedly had a very gloomy feel about it. This is especially true of the long north to south corridor which was designed so that one could stand at the very end of one wing and see to the far end of the opposite wing, a distance of some 312 feet. This was achieved because the central octagonal hall supported the tower above, allowing a clear vista from one end to the other. Although the central hall was an appealing design feature, it may have ultimately been the Abbey’s demise. The cost of building Fonthill Abbey was enormous and in 1823, Beckford was forced to sell the abbey and most of its contents for a mere £330, a price reflected by the running costs of the building. This sale saved Beckford from suffering the consequences of rather rushed construction. The tower, built with completely inadequate foundations, collapsed in 1825. The rest of the building was demolished in 1858 although part of the north wing remains.
The most fashionable architect of the day, James Wyatt (1746-1813), was commissioned by Beckford to design Fonthill Abbey. Wyatt looted medieval England for ideas and the scale of his building was immense, in fact, it is the largest private house ever built in the UK. First
SIR HENRY RAEBURN Head and shoulders portrait in a white dress of Mary Morrison, wife of Robert William Duff of Fetteresso and Culter Oil on canvas, circa 1799 Unframed: 293/4 x 25 in (75.6 x 63.5cm) Framed: 39 x 34 in (99.1 x 86.4 cm) Contained in its period carved and gilded frame PROVENANCE Sale, 1934, bt. Partridge; Private Collection California until present EXHIBITED Birmingham, 1903, number 58 LITERATURE James Greig, Raeburn (1911) page 43; Dr. David Mackie, Complete Catalogue of Raeburn, Life and Art, unpublished Ph.D. Thesis, Edinburgh and Yale, 1994, catalogue number 231, pp.341-2. P2H0226
Raeburn RA (1756-1823) is without peer as the greatest Scottish portrait painter of the late 18th and early 19th century, and as Sir Ellis Waterhouse has noted, “the most Scottish of Scots portrait painters” Mary Morrison, was the daughter of George Morrison of Haddo. She married her step-brother LieutenantColonel Robert William Duff of Fetteresso and Culter (1767-1834) and died in 1833
Sir Henry Raeburn is without peer as the greatest Scottish portrait painter of the late 18th and early 19th century, and as Sir Ellis Waterhouse has noted, “the most Scottish of Scots portrait painters”. He was born at Stockbridge near Edinburgh on 4 March 1756 and he died in Edinburgh on 8 July 1823. He received some tuition from David Deuchar, a man of decidedly modest talent, and his style was largely developed from within himself. Although he visited Italy (Rome, 1784-6) with his wife, he had by this time already developed a refined and idiosyncratic style, and his portrait practice in Scotland was well established. The encouragement “young Raeburn” received from Sir Joshua Reynolds following a visit to London, though doubtless flattering, was scarcely needed – not least because Raeburn had “married well” and enjoyed a private income from his wife. Raeburn’s natural taste lay towards the scholarly and the contemplative, and it is little surprise that he empathised with the members of the Scottish enlightenment in his native Edinburgh: he was the painter
par excellence of the scholars, lawyers and academics of the City, with a style which emphasised the psychological interpretation of character rather than the depiction of superficial finery. Surprisingly, though, he was equally adept at depicting sympathetically the Scottish female face, and he was not averse to showing the occasional Highland Grandee in his flamboyant tartan finery. The sitter, Mary Morrison, was the daughter of George Morrison of Haddo. She married her step-brother Lieutenant-Colonel Robert William Duff of Fetteresso and Culter (1767-1834) and died in 1833. Her husband was Colonel of the Forfarshire Militia, the son of Robert Duff of Logie, viceadmiral of the red and who bought Fetteresso in 1782, and his wife Lady Helen Duff, daughter of the 1st Earl of Fife. His portrait, the companion to the present painting, was sold at Sotheby’s New York 14th January 1988 (lot 176) and is now in an American Collection.
FREDERICK SIDNEY Landscape with a view of a castle on a hill surrounded by a town, possibly a view of Bridgnorth in Shropshire Signed and dated 1856 Oil on canvas Unframed: 21 x 271/2 in (53.3 x 69.8cm) Framed: 25 x 311/2 in (63.5 x 80cm) P1I0822
THOMAS WEAVER A Liver and White English Pointer in a Wood Signed and dated 1810, lower left Oil on canvas Unframed: 24 x 30in (61 x 76cm) Framed: 293/4 x 353/4 in (75.5 x 91cm) PROVENANCE Private Collection, England until 2003 P2H0556
THOMAS WEAVER ‘Quibbler’, Bay horse standing in a Shropshire landscape, the Wrekin in the distance Signed Oil on canvas Unframed: 253/4 x 34 in (65.4 x 86.4cm) Framed: 321/4 x 401/2 in (81.9 x 102.9cm) In a fine antique carved and gilded frame P2H0042
Weaver was most known for his paintings of livestock and prize cattle He worked predominantly in his native Shropshire and developed into a refined and renowned horse painter, and was instructed for a time by John Boultbee He is most well-known for his series of horse paintings produced in 1815, some of which he exhibited at the RA and the Liverpool Academy
Thomas Weaver (1774-1843) was a Shropshire artist who mainly painted portraits of livestock for breeders, and pedigree cattle. Weaver was given some instruction in painting by John Boultbee, whose work, in turn, was somewhat influenced by Stubbs. By 1800, Weaver had a good practice as a livestock painter and painted for William Coke of Norfolk, and many of the leading agricultural reformers. His paintings include The Warwickshire Hunt and its Master John Corbet, in 1812, and also a series of horse paintings in 1815, some of which he exhibited at the RA and also the Liverpool Academy. In 1811, Weaver married Susanna Pyefinch, daughter of Rev. John Pateshall Pyefinch, Rector of the First Portion of Westbury, Salop. Later that year his success as an artist was such that he had over nine hundred pounds in his bank account. However after having a large family, and with the post-war depression, he came into financial difficulties. He had two sons, the eldest John Pyefinch Weaver, who became a landscape artist, and a younger son Thomas, who went to live with his brother in Liverpool. Weaver’s paintings are realistic. His earlier work was a little naive, but became far more sophisticated with maturity, and he developed a pleasing eye for the equine pose, matched by a smooth painterly technique to express it. His work remains much in his native county. The present painting is typical of the painter in the prime of his career, and was probably painted originally for a local landowner and sportsman in Shropshire.
CHARLES HENRY SCHWANFELDER Gun Dogs in a Landscape Signed and dated 1822 Oil on panel Unframed: 5 x 71/2 in (12.7 x 19cm) Framed: 8 x 101/4 in (20 x 26cm) P2H0121
Born in Leeds of German descent, Schwanfelderâ€™s Father was an accomplished snuffbox painter and clock face decorator Schwanfelder worked primarily in the country, however, between 1809 and 1818 he exhibited regularly at the RA and was a popular supporter of the Northern Society for the Encouragement of Arts In 1814 he became animal painter to the Prince Regent and subsequently King George IV
Born in Leeds of German descent Charles Henry Schwanfelder (1774-1837) had early exposure to painting through his Father who was an accomplished snuffbox painter and clock face decorator. In his early days he trained with his Father but soon developed a style of his own taking his inspiration from animals and landscapes. He spent most of his life in the north working predominately from Yorkshire however he is documented as travelling in Wales, the Lake District, and Scotland as well as making frequent trips to London. Between 1809 and 1818 he exhibited at the Royal Academy giving several addresses for both London and Leeds. Exhibiting at the Academy brought his work to the attention of the Prince Regent. It was his portrait of an Arab that he exhibited in 1814 that would lead to his appointment as animal painter
to the Prince and subsequently, reappointed to King George IV. Alongside the Royal Academy, Schwanfelder was a regular and popular supporter of the Northern Society for the Encouragement of Arts. At the first exhibition he exhibited an astonishing twenty-four works. His choice of subject in both animal and landscape reflected his romantic approach to his subject, often using wooded landscapes as backdrops for his animal subjects. He was a very capable painter of dogs, a subject he returned to in various formats and scales. The present painting represents the smaller intimate style of his work and is perhaps a sketch of patronâ€™s favourite dogs at work. Shaw Sparrow the writer, collector and critic wrote favourably of his work, referring to him as a transitional artist who combined the classicalism of Stubbs with the romanticism of Herring.
WILLIAM S. HEDGES A Bay racehorse being saddled by two grooms on the D'Urban racetrack at Georgetown, British Guiana Signed and dated 1847, lower right Oil on canvas Unframed: 15 x 22 in (38.1 x 55.9cm) Framed: 20 x 263/4 in (51 x 68cm) In a giltwood frame P2H0452
D'Urban Park racetrack was established a decade or so after British Guiana was recaptured from the French in 1812 It was the scene of much conviviality amongst the local plantation gentry and the administrative body was known as the Demerara Turf Club Paintings by W S Hedges are very rare but he was working in Guiana as early as 1832, when he painted the large panorama of Georgetown from the sea which is now in the UK Government Art Collection
Georgetown was named after King George III after it was recovered from the French in 1812 towards the end of the Napoleonic Wars. It is the capital of British Guiana (now Guyana) and is built at the mouth of the Demerara River. In the late 18th and early 19th century, the source of the territory's wealth was sugar: Demerara Sugar was always sold at a premium price in the European market. D'Urban Park racetrack was established a decade or so after the territory was recaptured, and was the scene of much conviviality amongst the local plantation gentry. The administrative body was known as the Demerara Turf Club.
Prince of Wales Stakes were held in the presence of the Prince himself. The racetrack was redeveloped after being nationalised in 1971 and the site now holds the Ministry of Housing where the old Pavilion stood: its former use is remembered in the name of the road on which it stands: â€œHomestretch Avenueâ€?. The large church on the right is the second St. George's Anglican Cathedral which was opened in 1842, but which had only a brief life before being dismantled as being unstable. The building which replaced it, the current cathedral, was for over 100 years the largest all-wood building in the world.
The track was in the middle of the legislative and government area of the City: the major government buildings may be seen in the background of the present painting. The high point of sport at D'Urban was as late as 1966, the year of the colony's independence, when the
Paintings by W S Hedges are very rare and little or nothing is recorded about his life. He was working in Guiana as early as 1832, when he painted the large panorama of Georgetown from the sea which is now in the UK Government Art Collection.
ARTHUR DEVIS Small full-length portrait of Henry Streatfield of Chiddingstone leaning on a tree in a landscape with his hat, gun and dog at his feet Oil on canvas, circa 1755 Unframed: 24 x 161/2 in (61 x 41.9cm) Framed: 31 x 231/2 in (78.7 x 59.7cm) Contained in its fine carved and gilded original frame PROVENANCE By family descent P2H0093
Arthur Devis (1711-1787) is the best, and best-known, (apart from Hogarth) of the many English 18th century painters of small-scale intimate portraits and conversation pieces Henry Streatfield was perhaps the most noteworthy member of his family, who were members of the prosperous gentry whose modest fortune was based on commerce This picture is an invaluable image of the burgeoning prosperous upper middle class
Henry Streatfield (1706-1762) was the scion of an old Kentish family which traces its roots in the village of Chiddingstone from at least 1514, when Robert Streatfield, an iron master and wool merchant, was living in prosperous circumstances in the village. Chiddingstone village, “the most perfect Tudor Village in the country”, is unusual in that the whole village, apart from the church is the property of the National Trust. It stands on the River Eden near Sevenoaks and is exceedingly picturesque. Henry Streatfield was perhaps the most noteworthy member of his family, who were, like so many of Devis’s sitters, members of the prosperous gentry whose modest fortune was based on commerce. He married Anne, natural daughter of Sir Jocelyn Sidney, 7th Earl of Leicester of Penshurst Place on 21 September 1752. It seemed likely that he would inherit a substantial portion of that opulent estate, but a long court case and an early death in 1762 saw the family (which by that time consisted of two sons and two daughters) inherit only the income from the Sidney estates in Wales. Henry Streatfield died in 1762, and is buried at St. Anne’s Church in the village. Descendants of the Streatfield family still live in the village today. The companion portrait of his wife, Anne, was sold at Bonhams, London, 8 December 2004 (lot 42).
Arthur Devis is the best, and best-known, (apart from Hogarth) of the many English 18th century painters of small-scale intimate portraits and conversation pieces. His meticulously finished and technically expert paintings are redolent of a refined Georgian age, and each portrait sets its sitter in his social context. As his portrait practice grew from his native Preston in Lancashire in the late 1730’s, Devis moved south to work and settle in London, where he was already well-established by 1742. Devis’s career blossomed through the 1740’s, and he created numerous small full-length portraits of, principally, the “Old Gentry” and the “New Men” of the Georgian Age, who had made their fortunes through commerce, trade or banking– though he did have a number of aristocratic sitters. He has left us with a series of invaluable images of the burgeoning prosperous upper middle class as they journeyed from the City to the Landed Estate and grand house, a process which has continued to this day.
ARTHUR DEVIS ‘A Peaceable Kingdom’: A small full-length portrait of a gentleman sitting on a rocky outcrop in a landscape holding a book, with a menagerie of animals beyond Oil on canvas, circa 1740 Unframed: 20 x 14 in (51.3 x 35.9cm) Framed: 26 x 20 in (66 x 50.8cm) Contained with a carved and gilded swept frame PROVENANCE with Rafael Valls, from whom acquired by a Private Collector, New Forest, Hampshire P2H0464
The present painting is in a more scholarly vein than many of Devis’ portraits in that it employs attributes to suggest the virtues of the sitter The sitter has traditionally been identified as one ‘Mr Atherton’, a member of the prominent Lancashire family who are the subject of a number of portraits by Devis The idea of the ‘Peaceable Kingdom’ was taken up by the Methodist church as it perfectly illustrated their beliefs in the abolition of faction by peaceful resolution Methodism was especially prevalent in Devis’s home town of Preston where a group of adherents were established by 1764
The present painting is in a more scholarly vein than many of Devis’ portraits and the accoutrements which the artist has chosen to set the context of his sitter are unusual. The book is, of course, a part of the standard repertoire of the professional man, the scholar or the cleric, implying a learned character whose social position relies more on intelligence than acquired wealth from trade or inherited wealth from landowning. The group of animals in the background, though, is altogether more unusual. The contiguity of the book and the animals has lead several scholars to suggest that the sitter (whose identity has long been lost) is a writer on natural history: the names of Thomas Boreman, publisher of the much-reprinted
Description of above three hundred animals (1730) and Frederick Watson, author of The animal world display'd (1755) have been suggested. The former is unlikely, being a generation earlier than the sitter in the present painting; the latter is possible, but was a man of considerable obscurity. In short, these proposed identifications can safely be discarded. The traditional identification of the sitter is “Mr. Atherton”. Atherton is very much a Lancashire surname, deriving from the eponymous village not far from Preston, Devis’s hometown. Its grandest branch ended in the male line with the demise of Richard Atherton of Atherton, who died in 1726, though his estate and great house (designed by Colen Campbell) were inherited by his daughter, who married Robert Gwillym. They were the subject of a family conversation piece by Devis now in the Mellon Collection at Yale.
II depicted in the Walker Art Gallery painting, so clearly the two families were closely connected. A further clue to the identity of the sitter is surely to be found in the types of animals depicted. We have here a curious mixture of feral and domestic creatures, notably a recumbent lion and a lamb, a leopard and a goat. This, surely, is a visual evocation of the Old Testament prophesy of Isaiah of the “Peaceable Kingdom” (Ch. 11 verse 1-10, esp. v.6): ...The wolf shall live with the lamb, the leopard shall lie down with the kid, the calf and the lion and the fatling together...
Devis painted various portraits of members of the Atherton family, another, of one William Atherton II and his wife Lucy, can be found in the Walker Art Gallery in Liverpool. None of these could be the exact sitter in the present painting based on age, but a distant cousin of William Atherton II, Richard Atherton of Warrington is a viable suggestion. He was a scholar who matriculated from Brasenose College, Oxford, in 1717 aged 15 years and would thus have been aged about forty at the date of the present painting, which is entirely consistent with the apparent age of the sitter. Richard Atherton later became mayor of Preston in 1773.
This metaphor of the settlement of turmoil by quiet contemplation, and the abolition of faction by peaceful resolution, were central to the tenets of the 18th century religious revival personified by John Wesley (1703-1791), and which lead to the foundation of the Methodist church. Methodism has its roots in the Oxford of the 1720's where John Wesley and his friends established a student society which developed into the Methodist church, and where Richard Atherton was a student. Methodism has very strong roots in Preston as well, Devis's hometown, with a group of adherents formally established well before 1764; it is still today a centre of Free Methodist belief. We may conclude, therefore, that in this portrait, Richard Atherton is affirming his adherence to the new religious “enthusiasm” which had started in his student days at Oxford.
The present painting is technically typical of Devis's work in Lancashire, before his move to London: it is closely related to numerous small full-length portraits of 1740-42. Devis's father had been elected to the Common Council of Preston on 17 November 1729, the year after William Atherton I (d.1747), father of the William Atherton
There is a later analogy in the USA in the work of Quaker painter Edward Hicks, (b Attleborough, PA, 4 April 1780; d Newtown, PA, 23 Aug 1849), widely known today for his paintings of the Peaceable Kingdom, perhaps the most famous image in 19th century American art.
JOSEPH FRANCIS GILBERT A view in the Lune Valley, Lancashire, from Caton looking north-east towards Gressingham, with Ingleborough Peak and the Pennines in the distance and Caton Mill in the middle ground Oil on canvas Unframed: 281/4 x 50 in (71.8 x 127cm) Framed: 351/2 x 571/4 in (90.2 x 145.4 cm) Contained within a carved and giltwood frame PROVENANCE [perhaps commissioned by Thomas Eskrigge, (b. circa 1801) cotton manufacturer of Warrington, and by descent to his son]: William L. Eskrigge (b.1828), mill owner, and by descent to his son W L T Eskrigge of Stockport, Lancashire, (b.1860) Ownership inscriptions by William Eskrigge are attached to labels on the reverse of the canvas P2H0179
Joseph Francis Gilbert was born in Chichester, Sussex, in December 1791, the son of a watch-and precision-instrument maker He began exhibiting paintings at the Royal Academy, the British Institution and the Society of Artists from 1813 His work essentially continues the Georgian Romantic topographic tradition, with an emphasis on the “sublime” and “picturesque” The Eskrigge family were minor yeomen living in North Lancashire from the 16th century; their surname is a toponym from the hamlet of the same name which is close by the village of Gressingham Eskrigge was held up as an example of the ‘wicked capitalist’ in Karl Marx's Das Kapital
Mason, the friend of the poet Gray, thus described the view looking east from Caton: ‘The scene opens just 3 miles from Lancaster. To see the view in perfection you must go into a field on the left. Here Ingleborough, behind a variety of lesser mountains, makes the background of the prospect: on each hand, up the middle distance, rise two sloping hills, the left clothed with thick woods, the right with variegated rock and herbage; between them in the richest of valleys the Lune serpentines for many a mile, and comes forth ample and clear through a well-wooded and richly-pastured foreground. Every feature which constitutes a perfect landscape of the extensive sort is here not only boldly marked, but also in its best position’ (Quoted verbatim in Baines’ Lancashire Directory volume II page 30 (1895) and Victoria County History of Lancashire (Volume 8, Lonsdale Hundred page 79) Joseph Francis Gilbert was born in Chichester, Sussex, in December 1791, the son of a watchand precision-instrument maker. The details of his instruction as a painter are unknown, but there is a clear debt in his painting style to the works of the earlier painters George and William Smith of Chichester (to whom the present painting was at one time erroneously attributed) and William Pether, who were all landscape painters working in Chichester. He began exhibiting paintings at the Royal Academy, the British Institution and the Society of Artists from 1813. His work essentially continues the Georgian Romantic topographic tradition, with an emphasis on the “sublime” and “picturesque”. Towards the end of his career, his style became rather more “homely” and early Victorian. His output was largely curtailed by a paralytic stroke in 1850, though he did not die until 1855. He is buried in St. Bartholomew's Church in Chichester. Gilbert seems to have painted a series of views of Lancashire and the Lake District, all of which are of virtually identical size (some 30 x 50 inches). These presumably originate from a trip to the Lakes some time around 1820, and the drawings from that trip were re-used in his studio over a period of up to 15 years (the Abbot Hall Ullswater is actually dated 1834; an inscription on the reverse of the original canvas shows that it was painted in Chichester in that year). The Eskrigge family were minor yeomen living in North Lancashire in the 16th century; their surname is a toponym from the hamlet of the same name which is close by the village of
Gressingham. Like many ambitious families, they were involved in the burgeoning cotton industry towards the end of the 18th century, when they moved south to Warrington, where two generations of cotton manufacturers (both called Thomas) worked. As the importance of Manchester grew during the period of the Napoleonic Wars, members of the family moved to Stockport, just outside Manchester where they developed a large cotton-spinning business, which, as the 1861 Census notes, employed 2,341 people. This mill was run by William Eskrigge, Alderman and Justice of the Peace, the first certainly recorded owner of this painting, who had been born in Warrington in 1828. Eskrigge enjoyed a certain notoriety as an employer, to the extent that he is held up as an example of the ‘wicked capitalist’ in Karl Marx's Das Kapital. It appears that he largely ignored the new laws passed by Parliament to limit the amount of child labour in factories. He was on the Bench as a JP when one of his colleagues (who was possibly no more than a stooge for his own factory) was charged with failing to observe the strictures of the act limiting the hours that children were allowed to work. The members of the bench, all cotton-spinners and mill-owners inevitably found that there was no case to answer, and the charges were dismissed.
river. It seems inevitable that this is the reason for Eskrigge's owning the picture, melding as it does a view of the most beautiful part of their home county with a prospect of the village from which they derived their surname, and with the view of a cotton mill of a type which was the source of their considerable fortune. William Eskrigge's views on the activities of his niece Edith Eskrigge (1872-1948), leading Suffragette, political radical and social worker, can only be imagined.
It is notable that the present painting includes a view of Caton Mill in the Lune valley. This mill was functioning by 1808, and belonged to Isaac Hodgson, who employed 150 people there, 70 of whom were his “apprentices” who were wholly maintained by him. The remainder were men, women and children on weekly wages. Of the 70 apprentices, 30 were under fourteen years of age, and were maintained at an average cost of two shillings and eight pence per head; the total cost of their board and lodging (including a prayer and sermon in house on Sundays) amounted to £1001-3s-4d per annum. The author of A History of Lancashire writing a few years later in 1825 (about the date of the present painting) considered this a good arrangement, and noted that the children “have a remarkably healthy appearance”, though he notes that under Mr Greg, who bought the Mill in 1815, “the apprentices are now paid weekly wages for their maintenance and live with their parents.” Doubtless this “wage slavery” saved money, an economy which would have appealed to the careful Messrs. Eskrigge. The old hamlet of Eskrigge lies at Gressingham, which is about six miles from the viewpoint of the present painting, just by the bend in the
PETER PAILLOU (fl.c. 1745-1806) A Pair of late 18th century English Watercolours of Game Birds; one featuring partridge and the other snipe Watercolour on paper Unframed: 183/4 x 17 in (43.2 x 47.6cm) Framed: 213/4 x 20 in (50.8 x 55.2cm) In their original verre ĂŠglomisĂŠ mounts P2H0313
Exhibitions 2008 Throughout the year James Harvey British Art will be mounting exhibitions in London and New York. The programme will be varied and representative of both our oil and watercolour holdings. The following pages illustrate the first three exhibitions – all of which will be accompanied by an individual catalogue or brochure. All works in these exhibitions are available for purchase as soon as the catalogue is published.
‘A Gentleman’s Travels’, paintings by William Eyre
‘A Lady of Leisure’, watercolours by Caroline Vernon
English Sculpture Exhibition
Charles Church, Contemporary Sporting Artist
22 October-1 November at Mallett, New York
Traditions in British Art from 1700-2000
10 November-24 December
‘Little Crackers’ Christmas Exhibition
William Eyre A Gentleman’s Travels 9-18 April 2008
William Eyre (1891-1979) was a landscape painter of extraordinary talent who exhibited at the Croydon Art Society for the best part of twenty years, with the likes of Hesketh Hubbard, PRBA, ROI, FSA, Jack Merriott, RI, William Watkins, RI, William Fryer and Cicely Mary Barker. His works show considerable skill in the handling of both oil and watercolour, two very different mediums, and his landscapes have even been likened to Whistler: His confidence, sense of drama and simplicity of technique has also drawn comparisons with Cotman and there is a clear link to be made with the work of Edward Seago.
Eyre relocated in 1971 and for the last ten years of his life he lived in North Wales but still regularly contributed to the Croydon Art Society’s exhibitions, although he no longer put his works up for sale. His works record the myriad places Eyre visited, not only in England but on the continent, and spanned all seasons, but the sublime landscapes of Northern Wales proved to be his final and most haunting inspiration; he died there in 1979.
“William Eyre’s Nocturne Chelsea Reach inevitably reminded me of Whistler’s night scenes…the artist discovered in the subject something which transcends representation, that he had in fact presented the very essence of the scene.” CROYDON ART SOCIETY’S 1971 EXHIBTION REVIEW
Caroline Vernon A Lady of Leisure 8-17 May 2008
This delightful collection of watercolours illustrates the social grace and skills that were part of everyday life for the Victorian Lady. The artist’s depiction of her travels serve as a pictorial diary of a lavish age in which fashion and decoration are combined, providing a personal insight into daily life of the well to do. The opulent interiors of both the artist’s home in Farming Woods, Northamptonshire and other distinguished homes, serve not only as an anecdotal record of the people and how they lived, but also provide a contemporary record of what would have been modern design, showing furniture, picture and textiles. The interiors are perhaps the most enlightening subjects, particularly, in the houses subsequently demolished such as Teddesley, Staffordshire.
Caroline Vernon (fl. 1829-1868) nee Fazakerley married the Hon. Gowran Charles Vernon who was a barrister at law and recorder at Lincoln. He was the son of Robert Vernon Smith, 1st Baron Lyvedon of Lyvedon. The artist’s privileged background undoubtedly afforded her ample time to refine her painting technique. Her eclectic choice of subjects that range from the grand houses and fashionable destinations provided her with endless opportunities of interesting and varied subjects. Her work has a softness of touch, which she combines with a naive charm that is very personal. Unmistakably feminine, her eye for detail elevates her above that of talented amateur, a label, so often given to this school of artists that developed from a privileged upbringing.
Charles Church Contemporary Sporting Artist 8-18 October 2008
Following in the footsteps of Stubbs, Munnings, and Edwards, Charles Church has already made a reputation for himself as one of Britain’s leading traditional contemporary sporting artists and has built up an international following. His first solo exhibition in London in 2005 was endorsed by HRH The Prince of Wales who described him as “a very remarkable young artist” with a “unique understanding of his subject matter”. Charles’ work embraces the tradition of past masters but also has a very personal approach that is truly unique. His recognisable style blends both technical understanding
and a sense of aesthetic integrity establishing his work as a benchmark for a new generation of sporting artists. Also, his determination to work en plein air imparts a rich, fresh and painterly style that is rarely seen in the modern age. The exhibition in October will show a select group of paintings and sketches that illustrate Church’s development and passion for his chosen subject, not purely equestrian portraiture but a variety of themes from horses and hounds to an impressive array of landscapes.
James Harvey British Art 15 Langton Street London SW10 0JL Tel: +44 (0) 20 7352 0015 James Harvey Elizabeth Dellert Thomas Mangnall
James@jhba.co.uk Elizabeth@jhba.co.uk Thomas@jhba.co.uk
ÂŠ James Harvey British Art 2008
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In this, our first catalogue, I would like to thank the directors of Mallett who through their backing have made this new venture possible....
Published on Nov 3, 2011
In this, our first catalogue, I would like to thank the directors of Mallett who through their backing have made this new venture possible....