British Landscapes & Landmarks: Late 19th-century
These pictures, by a talented anonymous hand working in the late Victorian period, depict landscapes and landmarks of architectural interest around the UK - across southern and central England (Dorset, Hampshire, Sussex, Kent, Bristol, Wiltshire, Hertfordshire, Herefordshire, Worcestershire, Lincoln) and into Scotland at Edinburgh, Stirling, Rosslyn and Dunkeld.
In subject these works are very much of their time: evidently the product of sketching tours of Britain, they demonstrate the Victorian interest in historical and ecclesiastical architecture. In some cases they document buildings which have since changed or disappeared, such as Maresfield Park in Sussex, demolished around 1924. These pictures have an immediacy from having been composed in situ, with views such as ‘From the road between Christchurch and Bournemouth’ in Dorset, and ‘From the Imperial Hotel, Malvern’ - which was taken over for use as a school by Malvern Girls' College in 1919.
The works, however, have a sense of modernity and freshness which belies their age. Whilst the pictures often have a specific architectural focus, the artist sites these buildings in their broader rural landscapes. This modern sense of juxtaposition, between building and landscape, also extends to the pictures’ style of execution: the works combine fine topographical detail drawn in graphite, with looser areas of flat wash, which flesh out areas of tone and bring to life the broader landscape.