50
50

THE PROPERTY OF PATRICK MANSEL LEWIS, STRADEY CASTLE, LLANELLY

Sir Edwin Henry Landseer, R.A.
STUDY OF HIGHLAND BLACKFACE SHEEP
Estimate
30,00050,000
LOT SOLD. 93,750 GBP
JUMP TO LOT
50

THE PROPERTY OF PATRICK MANSEL LEWIS, STRADEY CASTLE, LLANELLY

Sir Edwin Henry Landseer, R.A.
STUDY OF HIGHLAND BLACKFACE SHEEP
Estimate
30,00050,000
LOT SOLD. 93,750 GBP
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

Old Masters Evening Sale

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London

Sir Edwin Henry Landseer, R.A.
LONDON 1802 - 1873
STUDY OF HIGHLAND BLACKFACE SHEEP
inscribed in chalk, verso: 84 / May 8/74
oil on millboard
26.5 x 37 cm.; 10 1/2  x 14 1/2  in.
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Provenance

The artist's studio sale, London, Christie's, 8 May 1874 (first day of sale), lot 84, for £180 to Agnew's on behalf of

Charles William Mansel Lewis (1845–1931), Stradey Castle, Llanelly, Carmarthenshire;

Thence by descent.

Exhibited

Sheffield, Mappin Art Gallery, Landseer and His World, 6 February – 12 March 1972, no. 53.

Catalogue Note

This exceptionally well preserved and freely handled sketch of Highland sheep is one of a number of early oil sketches, drawings and écorche studies of animals that were bought from Landseer’s studio sale by the amateur artist Charles Mansel Lewis (1845–1931). Painted rapidly, with confident and assured brushstrokes, it demonstrates the artist’s innate feeling for the physical properties of animal pelage; the shaggy texture of wool and the dull sheen of horn. Together with his intrinsic understanding of anatomy, it was this quality that made Landseer the most brilliant animal painter of the nineteenth century.

Mansel Lewis had cultivated his interest in art whilst at Oxford University where he befriended the Slade Professor of Art, William Riviere, whose work he later collected, together with that of his son, Briton Riviere. In 1874 he inherited the Stradey estate in South Wales, where he swiftly constructed an artist’s studio at the top of a tower with windows looking out onto the Bristol Channel, where he could paint by the soft Carmarthen light. At about this time he also met and became a lifelong friend and patron of Hubert von Herkomer.

The six day sale of the contents of Landseer’s studio, including paintings, drawings, prints and books held at Christie’s in May 1874 attracted widespread interest, with strong competition from collectors and dealers alike for the 1,400 lots. Mansel Lewis obviously felt an affinity with Landseer’s sporting scenes, his deer hounds, dead stags, hawks and sporting dogs (see preceding two lots), and his studies of animals and rural life. As a painter himself, however, he was also clearly intrigued by the process of Landseer’s art, the didactic studies through which he had mastered his craft and trained his eye.

Old Masters Evening Sale

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London