Bull in Pasture - Original late 19th-century charcoal drawing

An original late 19th-century charcoal drawing, Bull in Pasture.

A subtle drawing of a bull standing in a paddock. The artist has smudged the charcoal on the bull's body to evoke the soft texture of skin and hide. 

There is also a delightful set of four drawings on the verso. The top two, in pen and ink, are beautifully drawn details of the heads of fashionable Victorian ladies. The lower right is a loose graphite sketch of two figures on horses, presumably a preparatory drawing for the image to the lower left, a pen and ink drawing with watercolour detail depicting the same figures in fuller detail. 

Some minor age toning, particularly towards the edges of the sheet, as shown. There is a small soft crease across the lower right corner.
23.8cm x 30.5cm.

This picture forms part of a whimsical collection of works we have for sale of various farm and domestic animals, such as dogs, chickens, horses and cows, dating from the late 1870s and early 1880s.

Many of the works appear to be intricately detailed copies of popular Victorian prints taken from well-known sources. Four are replicas of established works by the famed animal painter Sir Edwin Henry Landseer, such as “The Three Dogs” and “The Pet of the Duchess”, which were reproduced in a collection called “The Landseer Gallery” printed in 1875. The drawings of chickens are also possibly drawn around this time; some of them appear to be copies of breeds printed in Cassell’s Poultry Book published in that same year. Other images also stem from serial publications such as the Illustrated London News, as well as other popular French and British animal prints.

Although the works appear to be executed by a number of hands given the variance in styles and subject matter, their roots in popular print culture indicates the wealth of affordable visual imagery newly accessible to the Victorian literary public at the end of the century, as well as the emerging Victorian taste for subjects of simplicity, domesticity and kitsch.

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Product code: JF-553

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