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Sir Joshua Reynolds sketch offered by Hansons - 15/11/2012

Hansons are pleased to offer a rare sketch by one of Britain’s leading 18th century artists, Sir Joshua Reynolds R.A. (1723-1792). The sketches, based on Italian scenes depict nudes in a classical manner, a manner he homed on his pilgrimage to Italy. He landed at Leghorn in January 1750 and headed for Rome, where he stayed for two years before visiting Florence, Bologna, Parma and Venice.  As the fountainhead of European art at the time, Italy was to inspire and cultivate Reynolds already present ideas of classical motifs, and the styles of the great masters.
It was around this time that Reynolds composed the sketch we will offer in our forthcoming Winter Fine Arts Sale on Thursday 6th December. Composed circa 1750, this piece articulates the beginning of Reynolds’ grand tour, and exposes his preconceptions of the grandiose Italian style.  Reynolds completed over 3000 works of art, including a few preliminary sketches which were very rare as he wasn't a keen draughtsman. Rare in form, this piece will be offered with the estimate of £100-200.

Reynolds is perhaps best known for his famous ‘Boy Reading,’ which was completed in 1947. In this quiet composition, the viewer becomes a silent voyeur catching the child’s meditative moment; its sibling, ‘Girl Reading’ was exhibited at the Royal Academy upon completion in 1771. Reynolds theme of silent contemplation and viewer as voyeur can be seen in the little sketch we have consigned.

Viewing for our Winter Fine Art Sale is on Wednesday 5th December from 11am-7pm, and on the morning of the auction from 9am until auction commences at 10:30am. For further details please email or call the office on 01283 733988

Elizabeth Bailey

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