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Details & Cataloguing

English Literature, History, Children’s Books and Illustrations, including The Garrett Herman Collection: The Age of Darwin

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London

Wynfield, David Wilke
COLLECTION OF 19 PHOTOGRAPHIC PORTRAITS OF ARTISTS AND OTHER FRIENDS, COMPRISING:
Sir John Everett Millais, Frederick R. Pickersgill, Richard Ansdell, P.H. Calderon, Sir Frederic Leighton, Henry Stacey Marks, Thomas Faed, William Gale, Thomas Oldham Barlow, G.F. Watts, Charles S. Keene, Frederick Walker, John Dawson Watson, Henry Wyndham Phillips, self-portrait, William Frederick Yeames, Edward Hamilton, John Phillip, and William Holman Hunt, quarter-length with the sitters depicted wearing antique dress

19 ALBUMEN PRINTS (c. 210 x 160mm), mounted (overall mount size c. 530 x 390mm), captioned on the mounts (some captions in the form of photographs of the sitter's signature below the image, others with printed captions on the reverse of the mount and additional captions in pencil below the image), 1860s, some fading and spotting, one or two photographs lifting from their mounts, slight soiling and wear to mounts


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Catalogue Note

RARE PHOTOGRAPHS BY WYNFIELD WHO WAS AN INSPIRATION TO JULIA MARGARET CAMERON. David Wilkie Wynfield (1837-1887) was a history painter who made important experiments in photographic portraiture in the early 1860s. His sitters were mostly fellow members of the St John's Wood Clique, as well as other Academicians and Pre-Raphaelites, and give a privileged and intimate view of Victorian London's art-world. All but one of these photographs - "Edward Hamilton, MD" - form part of Wynfield's The Studio: A Collection of Photographic Portraits of Living Artists. Wynfield's technique, using a narrow depth of field, produced large-scale head and shoulder images with a slightly blurred outline, gave his portraits rare psychological depth; he was praised as having "greater softness, lifelike animation, and apparent power of movement, and breadth of light and shade than any photographic copies of pictures or studies from life that we have ever seen" (Illustrated London News, 19 March 1964, p.275). These photographs were a key influence on the artistic development of Julia Margaret Cameron. She was introduced to his work by G.F. Watts (one of many mutual friends) and in 1866 she acknowledged in a letter that she "owed all my attempts and indeed consequently all my successes" to Wynfield (quoted in ODNB, sub 'Wynfield, David Wilkie').

Wynfield did little to promote his photographic work and prints are rare: no complete surviving sets of The Studio have been traced and the number of prints in the current group is exceptionally unusual.

English Literature, History, Children’s Books and Illustrations, including The Garrett Herman Collection: The Age of Darwin

|
London