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Creator:
Richard Parkes Bonington, 1802–1828, British
Title:
Shipping in an Estuary, Probably near Quilleboeuf
Date:
1825 to 1826
Medium:
Watercolor over graphite with scratching out on medium, slightly textured, cream wove paper
Dimensions:
Sheet: 5 3/4 x 9 inches (14.6 x 22.9 cm)
Inscription(s)/Marks/Lettering:

Inscribed in artist's hand in pen and brown ink lower right: "RPB 182[...]"; inscribed on back in graphite upper left: "R.P.B. 1878"

Watermark: [What]man

Signed in pen and brown ink lower right: "RPB 182[...]"

Credit Line:
Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Collection
Copyright Status:
Public Domain
Accession Number:
B1981.25.2398
Classification:
Drawings & Watercolors
Collection:
Prints and Drawings
Subject Terms:
boats | coastline | estuaries | marine art | people | seagulls | shipping
Associated Places:
Europe | France | Quillebeuf-sur-Seine
Access:
Accessible by request in the Study Room [Request]
Note: As a COVID-19 precaution, the Study Room is closed until further notice.
Curatorial Comment:
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Throughout his brief career, coastal landscape would be a mainstay of Bonington’s work in both watercolors and oils. His affinity for such subjects presumably dates from his period of study with Louis Francia in Calais in 1817. Francia had fled to England as a youthful refugee from the French Revolution and become part of the circle of Thomas Girtin in London. When he met Bonington, he had just returned to his native Calais and was beginning to establish himself as a drawing master and marine painter. Francia would undoubtedly have transmitted to his young pupil an awareness of British watercolor practice and a taste for naturalistic coastal scenes, both of which were novelties in France. In the autumn of 1821, while still in the atelier of Baron Gros, Bonington embarked on his first extensive sketching tour, traveling through Normandy and producing watercolors of the coast. He would leave Gros’s studio by the end of 1822. He spent most of 1824 based in Dunkerque, and though he was back in Paris in 1825, he was again sketching along the Channel coast with his artist friend Eugène Isabey in the autumn of that year. This watercolor probably derives from that time. Although the inscription on an old mount (now removed) gave the date as 1818, this is clearly a work of Bonington’s maturity, remarkably assured in its elegant and fluid use of the medium.
--Scott Wilcox,2007-01
Exhibition History:
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English Landscape (Paul Mellon Collection) 1630-1850 (Yale Center for British Art, 1977-04-19 - 1977-07-17)

Masters of the Sea - British Marine Watercolors (Yale Center for British Art, 1987-06-10 - 1987-08-02)

Masters of the Sea - British Marine Watercolors (National Maritime Museum, 2005-08-25 - 2005-10-25)

Richard Parkes Bonington (Yale Center for British Art, 1991-11-13 - 1992-01-19)

Richard Parkes Bonington (Musée du Petit Palais, 1992-03-05 - 1992-05-17)

Behold the Sea (Yale Center for British Art, 2003-06-14 - 2003-09-07)

Paul Mellon's Legacy : A Passion for British Art (Yale Center for British Art, 2007-04-18 - 2007-07-29)

An American's Passion for British Art - Paul Mellon's Legacy (Yale Center for British Art, 2007-04-18 - 2007-07-29)

An American's Passion for British Art - Paul Mellon's Legacy (Royal Academy of Arts, 2007-10-20 - 2008-01-27)

Publications:
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John Baskett, Paul Mellon's legacy, a passion for British art : masterpieces from the Yale Center for British Art , Yale Center for British Art, New Haven, CT, 2007, pp. 292-93, no. 107, pl. 107, N5220 M552 P38 2007 OVERSIZE (YCBA)

Patrick Noon, Richard Parkes Bonington, "On the pleasure of painting" , Yale Center for British Art, New Haven, 1991, p. 104, no. 80, NJ18 B65 N66 1991 + (YCBA)

Link:
https://collections.britishart.yale.edu/catalog/tms:20041
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