Samuel Melton Fisher, RA (British, 1859-1939) Revellers at the Carnival, Venice

This lot has been removed from the website, please contact customer services for more information

Lot 25
Samuel Melton Fisher, RA
(British, 1859-1939)
Revellers at the Carnival, Venice

Sold for £ 18,812 (US$ 24,731) inc. premium
Samuel Melton Fisher, RA (British, 1859-1939)
Revellers at the Carnival, Venice
signed and inscribed 'S. MELTON FISHER./VENICE' (lower left); signed and indistinctly inscribed 'After the V.../S. Melton Fisher' (on remnants of a label attached to the stretcher)
oil on canvas
183 x 153.5cm (72 1/16 x 60 7/16in).

Footnotes

  • Provenance
    R. Peck Collection, Wimbledon by 29 July 1887.
    Private collection, UK, by the early 1900s.
    Thence by descent.
    Anon. sale, Christie's, London, 13 July 2016, lot 175.
    Acquired from the above by the present owner.

    'The subjects he chose were characteristic of modern Venetian life; his canvases were records of his observation of the people among whom he found himself, and by their brilliant reality and clever statements of picturesque facts gained the approval of everyone who was qualified to judge his work'
    (Alfred Lys Baldry, The Studio, 1908)

    The present lot is a momentous oil, capturing the vitality, colour and opulence of the Venice Carnival. A label previously attached to the stretcher was inscribed 'Scene from the Carnival, S Melton Fisher/Venice'. The present lot was likely painted between 1883, when the artist first arrived in Venice, and 1887, when the work was recorded in the collection of R. Peck.

    Fisher studied at the Lambeth School of Art and Royal Academy Schools between 1876 and 1881, winning a gold medal and a travelling scholarship; travelling to Paris, he studied with Jules Bonnaffé. His work In Realms of Fancy was purchased by Chantrey Bequest in 1898 and later in his life he returned to portrait and figure painting, possibly for financial reasons.

    Venice in the late 1800s was a popular destination for many artists; alongside Fisher were artists such as John Singer Sargent, James Abbott McNeill Whistler, Henry Woods and William Logsdail. The unusual beauty and uniqueness of the city was enchanting and for many artists, Venice was restorative and transformative for their practice. Artists in Venice would often focus either on the complex play of light on the water, architecture and canal views or working-class Venetians, narrow streets, interior scenes or daily activities. Fisher has cleverly combined a number of these elements in the present lot; he has depicted flamboyant revellers wearing beautiful silks, tulle, sparkles, flowers and elaborate masks, flirting and celebrating. The revellers are set against a background rendered with architectural accuracy, while a parked gondola occupies the lower left corner and a ray of sunshine illuminates the windows in the background. It is tempting to see the dapper figure on the bridge as a depiction of Whistler.

    Like his contemporaries, Fisher's Venetian views established a powerful and original iconography of the city.
Contacts
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, buyer's premium excluding Cars, Motorbikes, Wine and Coin & Medal sales, will be as follows:

Buyer's Premium Rates
27.5% on the first £2,500 of the hammer price;
25% of the hammer price of amounts in excess of £2,500 up to and including £300,000;
20% of the hammer price of amounts in excess of £300,000 up to and including £3,000,000;
and 13.9% of the hammer price of any amounts in excess of £3,000,000.

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

Payment Notices

For payment information please refer to the sale catalog.

Shipping Notices

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