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Ackermann, Rudolph, 1764–1834
Watercolor box.
London : Rudolph Ackermann, between 1799 and 1827.
Physical Description:
1 watercolor box : wood ; 10 x 26 x 4 cm
Rare Books and Manuscripts
Watercolor Box 7
Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Fund
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Copyright Status:
Copyright Not Evaluated
Three-Dimensional Artifacts
Rudolph Ackermann was active at 101 Strand (his "Repository of Arts") from 1797 to 1827 (see: British artists' suppliers, 1650-1950). Ackermann began manufacturing watercolor paints in 1799 (see: Ford, John. Ackermann, 1783-1983, p. 25).
Restricted fragile material. Use requires permission of the Curator of Rare Books and Manuscripts.
Wood watercolor box, manufactured by Rudolph Ackermann, London, between 1799 and 1827. The box includes original brass hinges, lock, and clasps; the original key is lacking. A brass handle is attached to the top of the lid. The underside of the lid bears a printed label, on green paper: "R. Ackermann, superfine and permanent watercolour manufacturer to His Majesty, at his Repository of Arts, 101 Strand. Publisher of the greatest variety of rudiments and drawing-books. Also drawing materials, wholesale and retail. And for exportation. NB. Drawings, prints, and rudiments let out to copy."
The box includes a single large compartment, divided into smaller sections by strips of wood. Atop this sits a shallow wooden tray. The box lacks pigments. It includes the following material: 5 rectangular and 2 circular ceramic mixing wells; 2 small porcelain (?) bowls with floral design; 1 small ochre bowl; 1 small white bowl (chipped); 1 metal cylindrical container; 1 small metal case containing 5 pen nibs from varying companies; 4 glass bottles of varying shape, one with possible pigment residue.
A second printed label is affixed to a portion of the inner compartment, partially mutilated (with loss of text): "R. Ackermann, superfine water-colour manufacturer to His Majesty, begs leave to recommend his colours to the nobility, gentry, and artists, being prepared with the ... they may be had ... Boxes of all sizes, and in either large or small cakes: also rudiments and drawing books with instruction ... supply the ... aid the pupil in his absence; together with all other requisites for drawing. N.B. Merchants, traders, and shopkeepers supplied on liberal terms.”
On the present copy of the box, the initials W.H.B. (presumably those of a former owner) have been painted in black, just beneath the lock on the front face.
Subject Terms:
Ackermann, Rudolph, 1764-1834.
Artists' materials.
Paint boxes.
Nibs (pen points)

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