Property from a Private Collection
SIR ALFRED JAMES MUNNINGS, P.R.A., R.W.S.
1878 - 1959
The Gypsy Encampment
signed l.l.: A. J. MUNNINGS
watercolour and bodycolour
36 by 52cm., 14¼ by 20½in.
The sheet is laid down to board, which bows slightly. The is some discoluration and spots of foxing. There are 8 small holes to the sheet and board near the right vertical edge which relate to previous woodworm which has since been treated.
The picture is held in a gilt plaster frame under glass.
"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. Prospective buyers should also refer to any Important Notices regarding this sale, which are printed in the Sale Catalogue.
NOTWITHSTANDING THIS REPORT OR ANY DISCUSSIONS CONCERNING A LOT, ALL LOTS ARE OFFERED AND SOLD AS IS" IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE CONDITIONS OF BUSINESS PRINTED IN THE SALE CATALOGUE."
Purchased directly from the artist and thence by descent to the present owners
Alongside the hunting scenes and commissioned equestrian portraits, gypsies also occupied much of Munnings' work, informing some of his most celebrated works, such as Gypsy Life, 1920 (Aberdeen Art Gallery). The present example is a more informal approach, Munnings swiftly portraying characters lounging by a camp on a summer's day with fluid, spontaneous brushwork.
The pre-occupation with gypsy life was something Munnings shared with his contemporaries at the turn of the twentieth century, such as Augustus John and Laura Knight. The appeal lay in their traditional ways of life, which were seemingly unaffected by the modernity that had been fundamentally altering contemporary living since the mid-Victorian era.