Sketching out the details: Five drawings and works on paper from Woolley & Wallis’ picture sale30 July 2021 While oil paintings tend to command higher values at auction, drawings and works on paper are a more affordable option and can make an excellent launch point for collectors just starting out.
While works in this category are regularly available at auction thesaleroom.com, here we pick out five works at the Woolley & Wallis sale of Old Masters, British & European art on August 11-12.
1. A view of the Thames
A view of the Thames at Battersea Bridge by the painter and draughtsman Walter Greaves (1846-1930), pictured above, is among the lots on offer at the Woolley & Wallis sale. The son of a London shipbuilder, river scenes were among his favoured subjects.
This 5.25 x 9in (14 x 23cm) pencil, pen and ink and wash is signed by the artist to the lower left and is estimated at £300-500.
View the catalogue entry for this Walter Greaves drawing on thesaleroom.com.
2. Nocturnal lakeside scene
A depiction of figures by a lake is also on offer at the Woolley & Wallis sale with a £300-500 estimate. The nocturnal scene is by an artist from the circle of Richard Wilson (1714-82).
Richard Wilson was a Welsh artist who became one of the leading landscape painters of his generation, becoming a founder member of The Royal Academy in 1768. He had several pupils and apprentices working alongside him at his studio in Covent Garden, including most notably William Hodges and Thomas Jones, although there were also numerous imitators of his classically-styled landscapes.
Executed in pencil and charcoal on blue paper and heightened with white, the drawing here measures 14 x 19.75in (16 x 50cm).
View the catalogue entry for this nocturnal scene on thesaleroom.com.
3. Portrait of a young girl
Among a number of portraits at the Woolley & Wallis sale is this black chalk sketch of a young girl by Sir Godfrey Kneller (1646-1723).
Measuring 7.75 x 5.75in (20 x 15cm), the drawing was once owned by the engineer turned art historian Henry Scipio Reitlinger (1882-1950).
Reitlinger was a major collector of Old Master drawings as well as many other objects including Chinese porcelain and Renaissance works of art. His collection was auctioned at Sotheby's after his death with seven auctions in total required to disperse all the works. This drawing featured in the second auction held in January 1954.
It is estimated at £300-500
View the catalogue entry for this Godfrey Kneller drawing on thesaleroom.com.
4. Prix de Rome sketch
Catalogued as French School (c.1830-35), this 8.25 x 11in (21 x 28cm) pencil, pen ink and brown wash drawing depicts a crowning ceremony for the Prix de Rome.
The Prix de Rome was a French arts scholarship which dates back to 1663. Students received an award with an annual bursary and prizes were awarded each year for painting, sculpture and architecture.
This sketch was exhibited at an Art Council of Great Britain show in London tilted Berlioz and the Romantic Imagination in 1969. It is estimated at £100-150.
View the catalogue entry for this French School drawing on thesaleroom.com.
5. An artist with easel
Arthur Herbert Orpen (1830-1926) was a solicitor and amateur artist. He was also the father of the great painter Sir William Orpen (1878-1931).
This drawing of an artist at his easel is signed, dated and inscribed to the lower edge ‘To N M Open 28 July 1911 A H Orpen’. The 14 x 9.25in (36 x 36cm) pencil and charcoal sketch is estimated at £200-300.
View the catalogue entry for this Arthur Herbert Orpen drawing on thesaleroom.com.