• Christies auction house James Christie logo

    Sale 7635

    British Art on Paper

    10 December 2008, London, King Street

  • Lot 40

    George Pyne (1800-1884)

    Eton College and Chapel, Windsor, from the Thames, figures on the bank of Fellows' Eyot in the foreground; and Eton College, Windsor, from College Field, the 'Wall' to the right hand side

    Price Realised  

    George Pyne (1800-1884)
    Eton College and Chapel, Windsor, from the Thames, figures on the bank of Fellows' Eyot in the foreground; and Eton College, Windsor, from College Field, the 'Wall' to the right hand side
    one signed and dated 'G. Pyne. 1854' (lower right)
    pencil and watercolour
    9½ x 13 3/8 in. (24.1 x 34 cm.); 9¼ x 13 3/8 in. (23.5 x 34 cm.)
    a pair (2)


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    Pyne's father, William Henry Pyne (1769-1843), was also an artist and one of the Founder Members of the Old Water-colour Society. George Pyne followed his father's penchant for landscapes, also being influenced by the work of John Varley (1778-1842), whose daughter he married. He specialised in the painting of old stonework and, perhaps as a result of this, received commissions to paint many of the Oxford and Cambridge colleges, as well as Eton. These two views of the college date from the same year as one of Pyne's publications on architectural drawing, Practical Rules on Drawing for the Operative Builder, and Young Student in Architecture.

    Arguably the world's most elite sport, the Eton Wall Game is extraordinary and has been played by a select number of students since its inception in 1766. It is played against the slightly curved wall that runs alongside College Field (visible in one of the present watercolours on the right hand side) and is roughly 110 metres in length.

    Fellow's Eyot is a field next to the Thames from which the 'Procession of Boats' can be viewed. This procession takes place on the 'Fourth of June', a festival at which Etonians and their families celebrate the birthday of King George III (1738-1820), who was a great patron of the school.

    For a watercolour of Eton College by Myles Birket Foster see lot 71.

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