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Anonymous sale; Christie's, London, 19 March 1971, lot 161.
There is an inscription in the lower left corner that reads 'C3 7458 Ap. 1958 Sp 20.4.58 (overmounted) and a further inscription on the back of the sheet that reads 'The Shrine with the Little Ship, Potovenere. WRussell Flint 22 x 14 7/8 in May, 1958'. The watercolour was not therefore executed between 1912 and 1913 when Russell Flint visited Italy as the catalogue note suggests.
SIR WILLIAM RUSSELL FLINT, R.A., P.R.W.S., R.S.W. (1880-1869)
(Lots 115 - 120)
Russell Flint was born in Edinburgh where he studied at the Royal Institute School of Art and undertook an apprenticeship as a lithographic artist. At the turn of the century he moved to London where he attended Heatherley's School of Fine Art and Hammersmith School of Art whilst working for The Illustrated London News. Between the First and Second World Wars, during which he served in the Navy, Russell Flint established himself as a skilled watercolourist. He was elected an Associate of the Royal Society of Painters in Water-Colours in 1914, a full member in 1917 and served as President from 1936-54. Elected as an Associate of the Royal Academy in 1924, he was made a full Academician in 1933.
In 1962 Russell Flint was one of only nine members of the Royal Academy to have his work exhibited in the Diploma Gallery during his lifetime. His Diploma Gallery exhibition attracted considerable attention; Eric Newton in his article for The Guardian, 19 October 1962, noted how Russell Flint had made the art of nudes his realm 'Other artists have inhabited it in the past - Boucher, Ingres and Etty among them. Greater artists than they have strolled through it, taking it in their stride - Titian and Rubens for example - but never making it their permanent home'.