On May 10th, Sotheby's new sale of British & Irish Art will take place in London with dedicated sections for Victorian, Early 20th Century, Sporting & Marine, Scottish and Irish Art. The sale has brought together an outstanding collection of drawings, watercolours, oil paintings and sculpture that celebrates the distinct character of British and Irish art. We hope this fresh approach will both answer the demand of new buyers who collect across a variety of genres and engage collectors worldwide.
Each section features superb examples, with sale highlights including John O’Connor’s dramatic London view, Ludgate, Evening (lot 4), Dante Gabriel Rossetti’s powerful and passionate Joan of Arc (lot 11), Arthur Hughes’ The Birthday Picnic (lot 17), a portrait commission that displays the artist at his most original and accomplished, and Edmund Blair Leighton’s monumental God Speed (lot 26). Sir Alfred Munnings leads the Early 20th Century and Sporting sections with Somwhere the Sun is Shining (lot 54) and Portrait of William Waldorf, 2nd Viscount Astor on Bill's Simondale II (lot 82). Scottish Art is strongly represented by the Colourists, led by Francis Campbell Boileau Cadell’s modern masterpiece, The Red Fan (lot 106), alongside fine examples by traditional and contemporary artists. Sir William Orpen’s stunning Portrait of Rose, Fourth Marchioness of Headfort (lot 136), with its pendant Geoffrey, Fourth Marquis of Headfort (lot 137), recall an enduring love-story that captivated Edwardian Britain, emerging here on the market for the first time. Further Irish highlights include paintings by Jack Butler Yeats, Louis le Brocquy and Roderic O’Conor amongst a broad offering of works featuring the best of past and contemporary artists.
We hope you will enjoy browsing the diverse and high-quality range of works on offer in this new format of British & Irish Art. There will be highlights of Scottish Art in Edinburgh and Irish Art in Dublin and Belfast before the full exhibition and auction at our New Bond Street saleroom, where we look forward to welcoming you.