502
502

PROPERTY FROM THE MINNEAPOLIS INSTITUTE OF ART SOLD TO BENEFIT FUTURE ACQUISITIONS

Studio of Sir Joshua Reynolds, P.R.A.
PORTRAIT OF SIR JAMES GRAY (CIRCA 1708-1714), 2ND BARONET, THREE-QUARTER LENGTH
Estimate
30,00040,000
JUMP TO LOT
502

PROPERTY FROM THE MINNEAPOLIS INSTITUTE OF ART SOLD TO BENEFIT FUTURE ACQUISITIONS

Studio of Sir Joshua Reynolds, P.R.A.
PORTRAIT OF SIR JAMES GRAY (CIRCA 1708-1714), 2ND BARONET, THREE-QUARTER LENGTH
Estimate
30,00040,000
JUMP TO LOT

Details & Cataloguing

Fine Old Master & 19th Century European Art

|
New York

Studio of Sir Joshua Reynolds, P.R.A.
PLYMPTON, DEVON 1723 - 1792 LONDON
PORTRAIT OF SIR JAMES GRAY (CIRCA 1708-1714), 2ND BARONET, THREE-QUARTER LENGTH

Provenance

Possibly collection of the artist;
Possibly his deceased sale, London, Greenwood's, 14 April 1796, lot 43 (as "Sir Henry Grey");
Captain Walsh;
Marchioness of Thomond;
Her deceased sale, London, Christie's, 18 May 1821, lot 25 (as "Portrait of a Nobleman, with a distant View of the Escorial");
There acquired by Samuel Robertson;
Andrew Robertson;
By whose Estate sold, London, Christie's, 18 June 1881, lot 51 (as "Sir Harry Grey, Minister at Madrid");
T.J. Blakeslee;
His sale, New York, American Art Association, 11 April 1902, lot 156 (as by Reynolds);
There acquired by Joseph Pulitzer;
By whom sold, New York, Parke-Bernet Galleries, 16 October 1941, lot 54 (as by Reynolds);
There acquired by John Nicholson Gallery, New York;
With Newhouse Galleries, New York;
Mr. and Mrs. Arthur Pew, Jr., Bryn Mawr, PA;
By whom sold, New York, Parke-Bernet Galleries, 7 April 1966, lot 70 (as attributed to Reynolds);
There acquired by Central Picture Gallery, New York;
Anthony Morris Clark;
By whom bequeathed to the Minneapolis Institute of Arts in 1981 (inv. no. 81.47).

Exhibited

Wrexham, North Wales, Art Treasures Exhibition of North Wales and the Border Counties, 1876, no. 350 (lent by Samuel Boxill Robertson).

Literature

Sir E.K. Waterhouse, "Pompeo Batoni's 'Portrait of John Woodyeare," in The Minneapolis Institute of Arts Bulletin, vol. LXIV, 1978-1980, p. 58, p. 61, notes 26 and 27, reproduced p. 60, fig. 4 (as Studio of Reynolds, but with the head attributable to the artist);
J.M. Kelly, "The Portraits of Sir James Gray (c1708-73)," in The British Art Journal, vol. VIII, Summer 2007, pp. 16-19, reproduced p. 16, fig. 2 (as Studio of Reynolds).

Catalogue Note

This portrait portrays the British diplomat, Sir James Gray, leaning against a ledge as he points to the Escorial in the background. The historical residence in the background helped identify the sitter; Sir Gray's first diplomatic position was as ambassador to Spain from 1766 to 1770. The painting was probably done at a later date by Reynolds and his studio.

Sir Ellis Kirkham Waterhouse (1905-1985), former director of the National Galleries of Scotland, argued that only the head of the sitter could be attributable to Reynolds. The rest of the composition was probably done by his studio, Waterhouse said.1 He also suspected that since the ambassador returned from Spain in 1769, and the sitter books Reynolds had of 1769 make no reference to him, the portrait must have been done posthumously. Meanwhile, professor Jason M. Kelly found that the evidence to determine when the painting was made is insufficient, since the artist's sitter books between 1774-1775 are missing, and the portrait could have possibly been done then.2

1. Sir E.K. Waterhouse, "Pompeo Batoni's 'Portrait of John Woodyeare," in The Minneapolis Institute of Arts Bulletin, vol. LXIV, 1978-1980, p. 58.

2. J.M. Kelly, "The Portraits of Sir James Gray (c1708-73)," in The British Art Journal, vol. VIII, Summer 2007, p. 18.

Fine Old Master & 19th Century European Art

|
New York