Henry Scott Tuke RA, RWS (British, 1858-1929) Half length study of a boy

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Lot 23
Henry Scott Tuke RA, RWS
(British, 1858-1929)
Half length study of a boy

£ 10,000 - 15,000
US$ 13,000 - 19,000
Henry Scott Tuke RA, RWS (British, 1858-1929)
Half length study of a boy
oil on panel
13 x 20.5cm (5 1/8 x 8 1/16in).

Footnotes

  • Provenance:
    with David Messum Fine Art, Cork St
    Private Collection, U.K.

    Exhibited:
    David Messum, British Impressionism, Autumn 1998, (L.873)

    This oil sketch is a fine example of Tuke’s small immediate paintings completed on the spot, ‘en plein air’, probably in one sitting. Tuke had several periods throughout his artistic career when he turned his back on the sea at Falmouth where he was based and placed his models in the woods at Pennance or on the grass covered slopes above the cliffs. Pennance point, a wooded headland by the sea at Swanpool on the outskirts of Falmouth, was Tuke’s open air studio. The warm air currents there, made it possible for him to pose the model outdoors from summer through to the autumn.

    His first major oil on a woodland theme was ‘A Woodland Bather’ (R186) painted between 1890 – 92, then there was ‘The Coming of Day ‘ (R345) painted in 1900 and exhibited at the Royal Academy 1901, followed by ‘To the Morning Sun’ (R473) painted in 1903 and exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1904. All of these were large finished oils and therefore it is not easy to compare them directly with this small study as Tuke’s oil studies were often a lot looser the larger set pieces. The brushwork is bold and confident and very impressionistic which indicates it was painted at a later date. Tuke did another series of paintings in the woods at Pennance in 1906 which included his pastel ‘Bluebells’ (R572) and another small series in 1909 which included a watercolour ‘The Sun Girt Wood’ (R620) and an oil called ‘Woodland Study’ (R622). During the First World War he also painted pictures in the undergrowth at the back of Newporth beach such pictures as ‘Faun’ (R765) with the Italian model Lucciani. His final group of woodland and models posing on the grass was in the mid 1920s when he painted such works as ‘Sunbathers’.

    The most likely date for this work is 1909 and the model, who is young, could be Georgie Williams.

    We would like to thank Catherine Wallace for her kind assistance in preparing this catalogue entry.
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