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Portrait of a Cornish Lady c.1730; English School
Oil on canvas in slim gilt frame.

A charming portrait typical of its period and influenced by the style of Sir Godfrey Kneller, the dominant Court and Society painter of his time.

This provincial portrait of Cornish gentry has a direct, truthful quality often missing in the work of the more sophisticated city followers of Kneller, who often achieved merely a blandly fashionable image devoid of personality.
Provincial she may be, but this lady has emulated the high fashion of the Court in her hair style, the 'undress' robe and her plunging neckline.
Also, rather amusingly, she has adopted a facial expression which one can only presume she thought was sophisticated...one eyebrow raised quizzically and a crooked smile. This wouldbe 'come hither' expression, whilst amusing, is also curiously endearing.

This portrait and another of a lady, probably her sister, (ref. 8853) are from the same Cornish estate where they were for generations...possibly since they were painted. Over the centuries the identities of the sitters were forgotten and the paintings moved into obscurity in little used rooms.

SIZE: 30.25 x 25 inc. frame
PROVENANCE: by descent through a Cornish family.
Ref: 8852
This item has been sold




Portrait of a Cornish Lady c.1730; English School.
Oil on canvas in slim gilt frame.

A charming portrait typical of its period and influenced by the style of Sir Godfrey Kneller, the dominant Court and Society painter of his time.

This provincial portrait of Cornish gentry has a direct, truthful quality often missing in the work of the more sophisticated city followers of Kneller who often achieved merely a blandly fashionable image devoid of personality.
Provincial she may be, but this lady has faithfully emulated the high fashion of the Court in her hair style, the 'undress' robe and her plunging neckline.

This portrait and another of a lady, probably her sister, (ref. 8852) are from the same Cornish estate where they were for generations...possibly since they were painted. Over the centuries the identities of the sitters were forgotten and the paintings moved into obscurity in little used rooms.

SIZE: 30.25 x 25 inc. frame

PROVENANCE: by descent through a Cornish family.
Ref: 8853
This item has been sold





Portrait of a French Nobleman c.1700; Studio or Circle of Hyacinthe Rigaud.
Oil on canvas in early 19th c. giltwood frame.

The aristocratic sitter holds a typical Baroque swagger pose, his right hand on a pile of books of which one is 'Regie de 1700' (Government of 1700).

HYACINTHE RIGAUD, (1659 - 1743), was one of the most important portrait painters during the reign of King Louis XIV. His instinct for impressive poses and grand presentations precisely suited the tastes of the royal personages, ambassadors, clerics, courtiers, and financiers who sat for him.He and his friendly rival Nicolas de Largillière were their era's leading portraitists, but Rigaud painted aristocrats while Largillière concentrated on the wealthy bourgeoisie. Their differing approaches reflect their clients' status. Rigaud's sitters are shown in elegant stances of natural superiority; they are members of society whose costumes and gestures describe their function within the state. He combined Anthony van Dyck's prototypes and opulent style with Philippe de Champaigne's stiff, linear formality. In his unofficial portraits, however, Rigaud's interest in realism and character displays the influence of Rembrandt van Rijn. Since Rigaud's paintings captured very exact likenesses along with the subject's costumes and background details, his paintings are considered precise records of contemporary fashions.

Rigaud studied in Montpellier and Lyon before arriving in Paris in 1681. He won the Prix de Rome in 1682 but on Charles Le Brun's advice did not go to Italy. In 1688 Rigaud's flattering, graceful portrait of King Louis XIV's brother brought him favour at court. His subjects included dignitaries at Versailles, visiting royalty, prominent artists, and church and military leaders. His studio employed both part-time specialists and full-time assistants like Jean-Marc Nattier. They often copied his portraits, which Rigaud touched up as necessary. Elected to the Académie Royale as a history painter in 1700, Rigaud later taught there.
In 1709 he was made a noble by his hometown of Perpignan. In 1727 he was made a knight of the Order of Saint Michael. Rigaud died in Paris in 1743 at the age of 84.

SIZE: canvas 45 x 35.5 inches.
Framed 53 x 43.75 inches.
PROVENANCE:
*The Bryan Hall Collection, Banningham Old Rectory, Norfolk (see image 6).(Mr. Hall's collection, built up over 60 years, was acquired mainly from country house sales of the great Norfolk families during the post war years). His collection was dispersed in 2004.
* Private Collection.
Ref: 8836
This item has been sold





Portrait of a Gentleman 1690; Attributed to Michiel van Musscher.
Small oil on canvas in a carved and giltwood frame. The fine quality frame was expensively restored and regilded by the previous owner, using both oil gilding and water gilding for different colour areas.
Dated 1690 and indistinctly signed centre right.

The fashionable and expensively dressed sitter looks confidently out of the frame as if surveying his extensive lands. The open book signifies that he is an intellectual.
His luxurious wig (from which fashion came the expression 'big-wig' for someone important), his silks, his costly table carpet, the very expensive Indian tea gown and particularly his pose, all make this the archetypal Baroque portrait.
The pose and treatment of the material are typical of van Musscher.
This type of portrait was usually on a larger scale e.g. 50 x 40 inches; the fact that this is 'in small' suggests that it was for the 'cabinet'...the intimate room for favoured possessions that was so fashionable during the Baroque period. Perhaps painted for a wife or lover?

MICHIEL VAN MUSSCHER (1645 – 1705) was a Dutch Golden Age painter. was born in Rotterdam in January 1645 and was later baptized on 27 January.
According to Houbraken, he showed a talent for drawing at a young age, and had many teachers, of which he kept a record. His first teacher was Martinus Saeghmolen in 1660 for two months, and in 1661, he took lessons from Abraham van den Tempel. In 1665 he took seven lessons with Gabriel Metsu, and in 1667 he spent three months in Haarlem to take lessons with Adriaen van Ostade. Though his entire education spanned several years, Houbraken was astonished that he became so skilled with so few hours of professional study, and concludes that he must have had a great natural talent that he practiced extensively on his own.
Houbraken wrote that van Musscher moved to Amsterdam to work for Jonas Witsen, a wealthy art lover who introduced him to all of his friends as a portrait painter.

In Amsterdam, during the second half of the 17th-century, the top name in portraiture was Michiel van Musscher.

He married twice, first to Eva Visscher in 1678 in Buiksloot (Amsterdam), and the second time in 1693 to the widow Elise Klanes. His pupils were Ottmar Elliger the Younger and Dirk Valkenburg.
He died on June 20, 1705 in Amsterdam and was buried on June 25 in the Nieuwe Kerk.

SIZE:26.5 x 23 inches including frame.
PROVENANCE: Christie's London, where purchased by the previous owner.
Sibton Park, Suffolk, and by descent.
Verso: old auction catalogue entries.


Ref: 9025
This item has been sold





Portrait of a Gentleman 1730, by John Vanderbank.
Oil on canvas in a 19th century elaborate gilt frame.

The sitter regards the viewer with a direct gaze whilst his hand points to the inscription, bottom right, 'J. Vanderbank fecit 1730'

JOHN VANDERBANK (1694-1739) was born in London into an artistic family at the close of the seventeenth century. The son of John Vanderbank Senior, the well known royal tapestry weaver, Vanderbank studied painting first with his father and the portrait painter Jonathan Richardson.
He was one of Godfrey Kneller's earliest pupils at the Academy of Painting from 1711, and in 1720, when Kneller’s academy began to decline, started his own Academy of painting in St. Martin's Lane.

Vanderbank himself was a very able draughtsman, who, in his prime, found his works favoured over those of Hogarth. His painting style followed on from the vigour and grand style of Kneller. His work, however, is characterised by a more vital and nervous drawing than many of his contemporaries, and by a bold pigmentation, particularly in the flesh, where pink tones are painted thinly over the cooler greys of the ground layer to suggest glowing skin – the technique of 'colori cangianti', derived via Rubens from the artists of the seicento. Equally distinctive in Vanderbank’s work is the placing of pure red pigments for the highlights.

It was noted by George Vertue that "only intemperance prevented Vanderbank from being the greatest portraitist of his generation." He died of tuberculosis in Holies Street, Cavendish Square, London, on 23 Dec. 1739, aged about 45, and was buried in Marylebone church.

SIZE: 46.5 x 37 inches framed.
canvas 35 x 25.5 inches.
PROVENANCE: Kent Private Collection for many years.
Ref: 8830
This item has been sold





Portrait of a Gentleman c. 1590, probably Johan Upchierts; Circle of Adriaen Thomasz. Key.
Oil on canvas in reproduction 17th century frame.

This striking portrait from Norris Castle on the Isle of Wight has been traditionally called 'The Earl of Warwick', but this is unlikely. In the top left hand corner is the inscription "Johan Upchierts", probably the name of the sitter though research has brought up no such name.

The gentleman wears a steel gorget below his ruff...the badge of office of a military officer.
This is a fine portrait; sensitive and penetrating with a real sense of the personality of the sitter.

ADRIAEN THOMASZ. KEY (C.1544 - after 1589)
Scholars know little of Key's background, but he was probably portraitist Willem Key's pupil. Key was either distantly related to Willem or simply took his teacher's name.

Key became a master in Antwerp's Guild of Saint Luke in 1568, and his dated paintings are known from 1572 onwards. After Catholic Spain completed its reconquest of the Netherlands by seizing Antwerp in 1585, Key remained registered as a Calvinist yet continued working and teaching pupils. There is no record of him after 1589. Key is most admired for his portraits and for his power of objective observation. In his lifetime, he must have been highly respected, for he painted numerous portraits of William the Silent, prince of Orange and count of Nassau, a great leader in the Netherlands's struggle for independence from Spanish rule. His later portraits, which primarily depict Antwerp citizens, display greater emphasis on the sitters' status, probably resulting from Antonis Mor's influence. Key also painted altarpieces for Antwerp churches, including the high altar of the Franciscan church, whose figures resemble those of Willem Key.

SIZE: 32 x 26.5 inches inc. frame.
PROVENANCE: Norris Castle, Isle of Wight. (image 5)
Ref: 8905
This item has been sold





Portrait of a Gentleman c. 1590-1610; Attributed to Gortzius Geldorp.
Oil on oak panel, composed of three sections, now in a late 18th century gilt frame.

This is a fine, sensitive portrait of a wealthy gentleman, very expensively and fashionably dressed. The linen of his ruff is of such fine quality, and is so beautifully painted, that it almost seems lit from within.
The identity of the sitter has been lost, but it is almost certainly a marriage portrait; the portrait of his wife is also on this website.

Clothes and accessories were of enormous importance at this period. Often immense sums were spent on them, and sitters were justifiably proud and anxious to show them off. Their clothes and accessories also carried strong social connotations.
The artist invests the portrait with a quiet dignity, the beautifully painted face seems to glow with life.
He subtly evokes the textures of the sitter's costume, underlining their costliness.
Black was the high fashion of that era and the artist rises to the challenge of painting black on black to depict the subtleties of the garments.
Beautifully moulded by light and colour, this portrait has a strong human presence that reaches across four centuries.

GORTZIUS GELDORP (1553–1618) was a Flemish Renaissance artist distinguished himself through his portrait paintings.
After training in Antwerp, first with Frans Francken and later with Frans Pourbus, he became court painter to Charles of Aragon, Duke of Terranova. In 1604 he went with the Duke to Cologne, where he remained for the rest of his life, working primarily as a portrait painter for the well-to-do. Most of his 70 works are painted on panel. Nine examples of his work are in the Rijksmuseum, Amsterdam. The sitters were painted either three-quarter-length, half-length or head and shoulders; they are traditional in style but painted in a smoother manner than portraits by the old Cologne masters.
He had a brilliant and powerful palette in which the browns dominate. His later works are characterised by soft transitions and a blueish tone in the wrists and neck of his subjects.
He died in Cologne, aged about 65. The painter Georg Geldorp who was mainly active in England was his son. The painter Melchior Geldorp who worked in Cologne was probably his son or nephew.

SIZE: 24.5 x 22 inches including frame.
PROVENANCE: Deceased Irish country estate.
Ref: 8983
This item has been sold





Portrait of a Gentleman c. 1635; Circle of Cornelius Johnson.
Oil on canvas in superbly carved and gilded 17th century frame.

This remarkably direct and sympathetic portrait is of a type quite unlike earlier works of this period.
The usual static presentation has been abandoned in favour of one of one of baroque movement and depicts the unidentified gentleman as if he has just turned to gaze directly at the viewer. Unlike earlier portraits this man is informally dressed, wearing only a shirt and a dark fur cloak. A long section of his hair has been drawn into a 'lovelock', a Court fashion of the 1630s.
A similar portrait of a different sitter, signed 'C.J. 1632' is in the Huntington Library and Art Collections, San Marino, California.

CORNELIUS JOHNSON (Jonson, Jansen, Van Ceulen) 1593-1661, was born in London, the son of Flemish emigres.
Although Waterhouse thought he was trained in Holland it seems more likely (as Collins Baker has it) that Marcus Gheeraerts was his master in London.
Johnson is the most satisfying and 'English' of the portraitists working in England in the 1620s and 30s. He has a fine technique with a restrained and introspective style.
His accurate portraits are never flattering but a sober and objective portrayal of his usual sitters: the gentry and lesser nobility. His style, and that of his Circle, is easily identified by its coolness and restraint.

In 1632 he was made Painter to the King, but his wife's fears of the approaching Civil War caused him to retire to Holland in 1643. He continued to paint for the rest of his life, but was reportedly ruined by the extravagance of his second wife and died a poor man in Utrecht in 1661.

SIZE:(canvas)29.5 x 24.5 inches.
37 x 32 inches inc. frame.
PROVENANCE: Private Collection, Oxfordshire.
Ref: 8811/8842
This item has been sold





Portrait of a Gentleman c.1630; Circle of Thomas de Keyser.
Oil on canvas in a gilt frame.
Originally rectangular, this painting was converted to demi-lune; to judge by the frame in the late 18th or early 19th century...almost certainly to conform to a decorative scheme, perhaps it was placed over a doorway or fireplace.
De Keyser and his Circle's portraits are full of character and masterly in handling, and often distinguished by a rich golden glow of colour and Rembrandtesque chiaroscuro, as this one.

THOMAS DE KEYSER (c.1596-1667) born and died in Amsterdam. He excelled as a portrait painter, and was the most in-demand portrait painter in the Netherlands until the 1630s, when Rembrandt eclipsed him in popularity. Rembrandt was influenced by his work, and many of de Keyser's paintings were later falsely attributed to Rembrandt.
Some of his portraits are life-size, but the artist generally preferred to keep them on a considerably smaller scale, like the famous Four Amsterdam burgomasters assembled to receive Marie de Medici in 1638, now on display at the Mauritshuis museum in The Hague.

In addition to portraits, he also executed some historical and mythological pictures, such as the Theseus and Ariadne in the Amsterdam town hall, now the Royal Palace. De Keyser also worked as an architect. From 1662 until his death in 1667 he oversaw construction of the new Amsterdam town hall, now Royal Palace.
The Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam has the largest collection of paintings by de Keyser. His work can also be seen at the Louvre in Paris, the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York City, the Hermitage in Saint Petersburg and the National Gallery in London, among others.

SIZE: 19 x 29 inches inc. frame.
PROVENANCE: Private Collection, North Yorkshire.
Ref: 9006
This item has been sold




Portrait of a Gentleman c.1650: English School.
Oil on canvas in a 17th century carved and giltwood frame.

The sitter wears the black clothing and linen band of an academic, probably a doctor of divinity or law.
It is interesting that this portrait belonged to Robert Spencer until his death in 1997 then to Christopher Hogwood...both leading figures in the field of early music. It seems likely then that they both believed this man to be of importance in that field.
Certainly it is a fine portrait of an intelligent and sensitive looking man and the viewer is in intimate proximity to the image which fills the frame with a sense of quiet strength.

SIZE: 20 x 14 inches, canvas.
26.5 x 19 inches inc. frame.

PROVENANCE:Collection of Robert Spencer.
Collection of Christopher Hogwood CBE from 1997 - 2015).

ROBERT ALLEN SPENCER (1832-1997) was a leading figure in the early music field, equally accomplished as a singer, lutenist, guitarist, musicologist and teacher.Spencer taught at the Royal Academy of Music in London for 23 years. He went there originally to teach lute and then took a class in English song. He later started a similar class at the Royal College of Music and taught at numerous conservatories and summer schools both in the UK and abroad. He was regarded as a most sensitive and perceptive teacher.Apart from all his performing and teaching activities, Spencer's musicological researches are equally impressive and lack no respect from the pundits. He contributed numerous articles on a variety of subjects from rediscovered manuscripts to historical evidence gained from paintings.

CHRISTOPHER JARVIS HALEY HOGWOOD, conductor, harpsichordist and musicologist, born 10 September 1941; died 24 September 2014 at home in Cambridge.
Founder of the early music ensemble the Academy of Ancient Music, he was an authority on historically informed performance and a leading figure in the early music revival of the late 20th century.
At the time of his death, Hogwood was Honorary Professor of Music in the University of Cambridge, Consultant Visiting Professor of historical performance in the Royal Academy of Music and visiting professor at King's College London. He was an Honorary Fellow of Jesus College, Cambridge and Pembroke College, Cambridge.
In 1989, Hogwood was appointed a Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE). He was the recipient of the Halle Handel Prize in 2008.
Ref: 8880
This item has been sold



 
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