JULIA MARGARET CAMERON
'SAPPHO' (MARY HILLIER)
oval albumen print, mounted, signed, titled, and annotated 'from Life' in ink and with the Colnaghi blindstamp on the mount, framed, 1865 (Cox 252)
8¾ by 6½ in. (22.2 by 16.5 cm.)
Grading this albumen print on a scale of 1 to 10 – a 10 being a print with deep brown dark tones and cream-toned highlights that retain all of their original detail – this print rates a 6 or 7. A high level of detail is visible, especially in the sitter's clothes and necklace. The print has somewhat yellowed evenly overall. The highlights are overall warm and the darks are somewhat muted.
When examined in raking light, the following are visible: silvering in the darkest areas; tiny deposits of original retouching; and several linear scuffs.
Cameron's careful ink signature and notations on the mount remain quite robust. The mount is age-darkened, most notably at the periphery of the print. There is some light soiling and scattered tiny brown deposits, possibly foxing, on both the front and reverse. The edges of the mount are worn, and there is a small loss to the upper right corner. There is a tear to the upper left edge which has been reinforced with linen tape on the reverse. '3' [circled] and '166-B' are written in pencil in an unidentified hand on the reverse.
In response to your inquiry, we are pleased to provide you with a general report of the condition of the property described above. Since we are not professional conservators or restorers, we urge you to consult with a restorer or conservator of your choice who will be better able to provide a detailed, professional report. Prospective buyers should inspect each lot to satisfy themselves as to condition and must understand that any statement made by Sotheby's is merely a subjective qualified opinion.
NOTWITHSTANDING THIS REPORT OR ANY DISCUSSIONS CONCERNING CONDITION OF A LOT, ALL LOTS ARE OFFERED AND SOLD "AS IS" IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CONDITIONS OF SALE PRINTED IN THE CATALOGUE.
Janet Lehr, New York, 1991