Frank Brangwyn RA RWS RBA, Figures & Boats on Estuary Shore c.1905 oil painting


An original c.1905 oil painting, Sir Frank Brangwyn RA RWS RBA Figures & Boats on Estuary Shore.

This fabulous work is a preparatory sketch in oil by Sir Frank Brangwyn RA RWS RBA (1867-1956).

Despite its unfinished status, creating a near-abstract effect, an interesting peopled scene delineated in graphite emerges amid the array of subtle marks in oil paint. In his early years Brangwyn had joined the Royal Navy Reserve and began painting seascapes and maritime subjects, on the Thames and in Cornwall. Ships would regularly feature in his prolific output; here Brangwyn’s composition depicts a ship, viewed dramatically - as was often the case - from the bow. A collection of figures, young and old, dressed variously in bathing suits, shorts and boater hats, populates the foreground.

The Welsh art writer Walter Shaw Sparrow noted about Brangwyn: ‘In his best work he knows when to stop; and often he stops at a point which a great many onlookers find "unfinished," or "too sketchy."’

Oil and graphite on Windsor and Newton canvas. Presented float mounted in a box frame.

Provenance: Liss LLewellyn Fine Art. Dealer’s label verso, as shown.

In excellent condition overall. There are three slight scratch marks to the far lower corners of the canvas, which can be seen in the photograph.

33cm x 37cm.
Frame: 38 x 42 cm.

Sir Frank Brangwyn RA RWS RBA (1867-1956) was, during his lifetime, one of the most revered artists in the world. He was highly regarded in avant-garde circles, represented Britain at the Venice Biennale and was the first artist to be given a retrospective exhibition at the Royal Academy during his lifetime.

Born in Bruges, Belgium, of Anglo-Welsh parents, Brangwyn and his family returned to London in 1874. He received training in the studio of William Morris but was largely self-taught. Brangwyn became a prolific and versatile artist, receiving many commissions for murals (including across North America), tapestry, carpet designs, posters (during the First World War), and designs for stained glass, as well as producing numerous woodcuts and lithographs for book illustrations. His early work was influenced by the realists Bastien-Lepage and H.H. La Thangue. The Scottish colourist Arthur Melville taught him to brighten his palette and he was influenced by Delacroix’s handling of paint. Other major influences were Whistler, 16th century Venetian art, French symbolism, and William Morris and the Pre-RaphaelitesIt is estimated that he produced over 12,000 works during his lifetime. He was knighted in 1941.

In recent years, since 2006, the assessment of his work has been revived, leading to a number of important exhibitions and publications.

Text copyright © 2018 Somerset & Wood Fine Art Ltd. All rights reserved.

Product code: JM-116

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