M. Heber, Two Hounds after Stefano della Bella - Original 1818 graphite drawing

An original 1818 graphite drawing, M. Heber Two Hounds after Stefano della Bella.

A sensitively drawn study after an old master. The white chalk highlights combined with the tan-coloured paper give the drawing particular impact.

Initialled and dated lower right. Inscribed lower left.
Some toning to the paper due the artist's application of a wash, and a few spots of foxing, as shown.
20.8cm x 26.9cm.

This picture is one a collection of works that we have for sale dating from 1817-18. Comprising mainly animal subjects, they focus on details of old master works from the Dutch Golden Age and Italian Renaissance. It is probable that the artist is Mary Heber (1787-1846) of Hodnet Hall in Shropshire (one of the drawings is inscribed with nearby ‘Moreton Say’). The artist was clearly someone who had access to a variety of old master prints and paintings, with two of the studies described as being ‘from an original drawing’. Mary Heber was from an illustrious and learned family. She was daughter of the wealthy cleric and landowner Rev. Reginald Heber (d.1804), who was a man of some intellectual power and who had been fellow and tutor of Brasenose College, Oxford. Her brother was the celebrated English bishop, traveller, man of letters and hymn-writer, Reginald Heber (1783-1826), who became Bishop of Calcutta; and her half brother, Richard Heber (1773-1833), was a book-collector, who amassed a superb library estimated at nearly 150,000 volumes. These drawings pre-date Mary Heber’s marriage to the Rev Charles Cowper Cholmondeley, Rector of Hodnet, in 1822. Mary’s husband and brother Richard were to die in 1831 and 1833 respectively, after which she inherited Hodnet Hall for her lifetime. Her three daughters, Mary, Victoria and Hester, were all talented artists who, it seems, inherited their aptitude from their mother.

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Product code: JN-028

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