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    Sale 7719

    The Irish and Sporting Art Sale

    8 May 2009, London, King Street

  • Lot 51

    Sir William Orpen, R.H.A., R.A. (1878-1931)

    Uncle Raymond's portrait

    Price Realised  


    Sir William Orpen, R.H.A., R.A. (1878-1931)
    Uncle Raymond's portrait
    inscribed 'My dearest wife I think/there is a certain family/likeness here - Had a/fair morning yesterday/at Clonsilla but I find/it very difficult to work/from nature at a painting/I am doing from a/drawing - However I/saw a few facts that/I never would have/got from the drawing/I was prowling/about Dublin/on Saturday before/going for the 6.30/and went into/Butlers and/bought a/chandelier for/the studio - it/will be too big/In the house I got it because/I know I could/sell it/for more £18.10.0/its about 4 ft deep/and ought to look/splendid in the centre/of the studio/Uncle Raymond's portrait has taken/a turn for the better - his sitting is so/exceptionally good that he deserves/to get something decent - Marchant/wrote to me about 4 days ago saying/a picture of mine of the "wash house" (the/one of Lottie standing up that Girling/gave me £20 for about 4 years ago I/imagine) was up for sale at Christie's/last Saturday. I told him to bid for me/up to £60 so that my market share should not/be beaten. However it fetched 100 guineas/which is good and I'm pleased - I/enclose you a cheque for the amount you/asked - Hope you got the £10 safely/glad Bunny liked her party and/I'm sorry to miss the doing up/of the puddings much love to/you all your loving husband/Billon.'
    black ink and wash on Metropolitan School of Art headed paper
    13 x 8 in. (33 x 20.3 cm.)
    Executed circa 1908.

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    This letter can be dated to the week before Christmas 1910, when Orpen was working on a portrait of his uncle, the Rt. Rev. Raymond D'Audemar Orpen, Bishop of Limerick, Adfert and Aghadoe. The letter is dated by reference to the Christie's sale which took place on Saturday, 10 December 1910, the Lottie picture was lot 74, sold under the title At the Wash Tub. It is now known as The Wash House (Collection of the National Gallery of Ireland). The sketch is of Uncle Raymond.

    Special Notice

    No VAT will be charged on the hammer price, but VAT at 15% will be added to the buyer's premium which is invoiced on a VAT inclusive basis.


    The artist's family.