Walter Richard Sickert A.R.A. (British, 1860-1942)
Celebrations, Dieppe signed 'Sickert' (lower left) pencil and oil on canvas 91.5 x 63.5 cm. (36 x 25 in.) Painted circa 1911
PROVENANCE: Montague Shearman, 1940 With The Redfern Gallery, where purchased by Mr. S.S. Hammersley, 14 November 1944 Thence by descent
EXHIBITED: London, The Redfern Gallery, Richard Sickert, 29 February - 23 March 1940, no.25
LITERATURE: Wendy Baron, Sickert, Paintings and Drawings, Yale University Press, New Haven and London, 2006, cat.no.326, p.356
Dr Wendy Baron notes that she has only previously known Celebrations, Dieppe from a scrap book kept by Rex Nan Kivell of the Redfern Gallery. The picture was sold by the gallery in November 1944 and has resided undisturbed in a private collection since this date. The emergence of this work on the open market and alongside the re-discovered The Blind Sea Captain (lot 23) is cause for much excitement.
Sickert left for Dieppe, the town he illustrated so passionately throughout his career, shortly after his marriage to Christine Drummond Angus on the 29th July 1911. This period marked a fresh start for the artist who had been jilted by his former fiancée earlier in the year and on his wedding day. The present work would appear to depict the Hôtel de Ville in Dieppe with colourful flags fluttering throughout the centre of the canvas. The inclusion of these flags by Sickert, as a way of accenting the composition, may be owing to the excitement surrounding the Coronation of George V that took place in London that year. Interestingly, a preparatory sketch for the present work exists and was sold at auction in November 2008.
We are grateful to Dr Wendy Baron for her assistance in cataloguing this lot.