Wednesday, September 28, 2022

582. An Early Portrait of Charles Ricketts by Charles Shannon? (Continued)

Following the blog about an early portrait of Charles Ricketts by Charles Shannon - see blog 578. An Early Portrait of Charles Ricketts by Charles Shannon? - Anna Gruetzner Robins wrote to me that she also does not think that portrait could have been painted at Kennington Road, and that Brompton is more plausible: 'I feel fairly certain that it was painted at 12 A Edith Grove', mainly because ,'the surround looks Victorian.' 

12, Edith Grove, Brompton (in later years)

Other issues I touched on in the blog can also be complemented, albeit with little conclusive evidence. 

The catalogue Semi-Detached. Pictures of People and Places, the 1984 exhibition, indeed lists the painting, as number 38: 'Portrait of Charles Ricketts pre-1900 | oil on canvas 41.4 x 48.9 | private collection'. The label mentioned as owners 'Vint Hill and Killock of Bradford, but in the list of lenders their name is anonymised as 'a private collection'. According to the catalogue, this was the only painting from a private collection; otherwise, one work was made available by an artist and all other works came from museum collections.

About collector B.W.T. Vint (1882-1959), Anna Gruetzner Robins wrote that he was a 'big collector who left part of his collection to Bradford Art Gallery, the rest went to his son who kept it in a store near Heathrow airport so I expect that is where the picture came from.

Anna additionally discovered that the painting was not only owned by Gleeson White in the years up to his death in 1898, but that Shannon subsequently owned it. Indeed, it came back on the market after his own death in 1937. It was described in the auction catalogue Catalogue of Drawings and Paintings comprising […] Paintings by C.H. Shannon, R.A. Esq. Sold by Order of the Executors […]. London, Sotheby & Co., 29 March 1939, p. 18, no. 113.

Catalogue Sotheby & Co., 29 March 1939: description of 
'Interior of a room, with a man seated at a table'

I think Shannon possibly bought it back after Gleeson White's death in an attempt to help the widow who was left penniless. It was listed as number 113: 'Interior of a Room with a man seated at a Table'. The catalogue gives no title, only a description and leaves open who the person portrayed is. However, the provenance Gleeson White is given here.