After William Powell Frith, RA Derby Day
Lot 32W
After William Powell Frith, RA The Derby Day
£10,000 - 15,000
US$ 16,000 - 23,000

Lot Details
After William Powell Frith, RA
The Derby Day
oil on canvas
103 x 226.5cm (40 9/16 x 89 3/16in).

Footnotes

  • The present work is a same sized copy of Frith's iconic work, completed in 1858 and now in the collection of Tate Britain. When Frith's masterpiece was shown at the Royal Academy (1858, no.218) the response was so overwhelming that a rail was erected to keep the crowds back and a policemen was placed on guard. The Times noted that 'no closer nor completer transcript of a scene of English amusement has been painted since Hogarth'. The Derby Day comprises a series of social vignettes. Frith's interest in physiognomy and phrenology, seeing the face as 'a sure index of character' and social origin, is clearly evident, his characters, especially the groups of criminals and 'low lifes', confirming to social stereotypes. As Christopher Wood commented: 'Frith's picture is an accurate and faithful record of the moral climate of the time, combined with the skilful use of current ideas about physiognomy, character, and class distinction'.1

    The Derby Day was one of Frith's great panoramas of modern society, and stands alongside Life at the seaside (RA 1854, no.157) and The Railway Station (completed in 1862) as evidence of his talent at representing 'the infinite variety of everyday life...the kaleidescopic aspect of the crowd'. Following a visit to Kempton races in 1854, Frith noted 'Here is a scene I'd like to paint- "modern life" with a vengeance'. The result, and Frith's achievement at depicting 'groups and tents and sports, the jockeys, course, stands and all the rest' was remarkable, and he sold both the painting and the copyright, before it was even finished. Following the extraordinary furore at the RA, the work toured throughout the UK, going on to Europe, the USA, and Australia.

    1Christopher Wood, William Powell Frith, A painter and his world, Stroud, 2006, pp.57-73 and passim

    LITERATURE:
    Mark Bills & Vivien Knight (ed), William Powell Frith, Painting the Victorian Age, London, 2006, passim
    William Powell Frith, My Autobiography and Reminiscenes, London, 1887, passim
Auction information

This auction is now finished. If you are interested in consigning in future auctions, please contact the specialist department. If you have queries about lots purchased in this auction, please contact customer services.

Buyers' Obligations

ALL BIDDERS MUST AGREE THAT THEY HAVE READ AND UNDERSTOOD BONHAMS' CONDITIONS OF SALE AND AGREE TO BE BOUND BY THEM, AND AGREE TO PAY THE BUYER'S PREMIUM AND ANY OTHER CHARGES MENTIONED IN THE NOTICE TO BIDDERS. THIS AFFECTS THE BIDDERS LEGAL RIGHTS.

If you have any complaints or questions about the Conditions of Sale, please contact your nearest customer services team.

Buyers' Premium and Charges

For all Sales categories excluding Wine, Coins & Medals and Motor Cars and Motorcycles:

Buyer's Premium Rates
25% on the first £50,000 of the Hammer Price
20% from £50,001 to £1,000,000 the Hammer Price
12% from £1,000,001 of the Hammer Price

VAT at the current rate of 20% will be added to the Buyer's Premium and charges excluding Artists Resale Right.

Payment Notices

Payment in advance: by cash, check with banker's card, credit card, bank draft or traveler's cheque.

Payment at collection: by credit or debit card.

Credit card charges: a surcharge of 2% is applicable when using Mastercard, Visa and overseas debit cards.

Shipping Notices

For information and estimates on domestic and international shipping as well as export licenses please contact Bonhams Shipping Department.

Lot symbols
W Shipping & handling restrictions apply

Objects displayed with a w will be located in the Bonhams Warehouse and will only be available for collection from this location.

Contacts
  1. Customer Services (UK)
    Customer Services
    Bonhams
    Work
    Work +44 20 7447 7447
    FaxFax: +44 20 7447 7401
  2. New Bond Street
    General Enquiries
    Bonhams
    Work
  3. Sam Travers
    General Enquiries
    Bonhams
    Work
    101 New Bond Street
    London, United Kingdom W1S 1SR
    Work +44 20 7468 8232
    FaxFax: +44 20 7447 7401
  4. Shipping (UK)
    Logistics - Shipping
    Bonhams
    Work
    Work +44 20 7468 8302
    FaxFax: + 44 20 7629 9673
Similar Items