View full screen - View 1 of Lot 4. Two ladies sitting in the corner of a studio.
4

John Hamilton Mortimer, A.R.A.

Two ladies sitting in the corner of a studio

Property from the Collection of the late Cyril and Shirley Fry

John Hamilton Mortimer, A.R.A.

John Hamilton Mortimer, A.R.A.

Two ladies sitting in the corner of a studio

Two ladies sitting in the corner of a studio

Property from the Collection of the late Cyril and Shirley Fry

John Hamilton Mortimer, A.R.A.

Eastbourne 1740 - 1779 London

Two ladies sitting in the corner of a studio 


Pen and black ink and grey wash on laid paper;

inscribed lower left: To Mrs. Ireland / Maiden Lane, further inscribed verso in Esdaile's hand: Mortimer / [Ire?] lands Sale, 1810, W.E / P / 68 N 50

195 by 187 mm

The pen and ink and wash remain strong and close to their original state. The paper has discoloured very slightly and some surface dirt is in evidence. There is some foxing in the upper part of the sheet. Despite these small defects, the drawing appears in good condition


"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."

Presented by the artist to Mrs Ireland;
John Ireland (d. 1808);
his executor's sale, King and Locheé, 5-6 March 1810, lot 174 (a composite lot), or lot 214,
where acquired by William Esdaile (1758-1837), via 'Parker';
sale, London, Hodgson & Co., 21 October 1960, part of lot 561;
with Colnaghi's, London;
Leonard Gordon Duke (1890-1973);
by whom given to Cyril and Shirley Fry

G. Benthall, John Hamilton Mortimer ARA, Drawings and Engraved Works, with a Revised Account of his Life, typescript MS, completed 1950s, deposited in the Victoria and Albert Museum, p. 132A;

J. Sunderland, 'John Hamilton Mortimer. His life and works', Walpole Society, vol. LII, London 1986, p. 168, no. 104, fig. 17

Sudbury, Gainsborough's House, A Peculiarly English Art, English Drawings and Watercolours, 1994, no. 43

This striking image dates to circa 1775 and may show the interior of Mortimer's studio which, at this period, is recorded as being close to Maiden Lane in Covent Garden.


Having belonged to both William Esdaile and Leonard Duke, this work has a distinguished provenance. Furthermore, Mortimer's inscription - To Mrs Ireland - reveals for whom it was originally drawn. Mrs Ireland lived near Maiden Lane with her husband John, a watchmaker and writer. The Irelands were close friends of Mortimer's: she was one of the signatories to the artist's will, while Mortimer painted him in oils in circa 1778/9.1


1. J. Sunderland, 1986, op. cit., p. 191, no. 142, fig. 263