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    Sale 7579

    The Irish Sale

    8 May 2008, London, King Street

  • Lot 143

    James Dixon (1887-1970)

    Gipsy Moth coming round Cape Horn

    Price Realised  

    James Dixon (1887-1970)
    Gipsy Moth coming round Cape Horn
    signed, indistinctly inscribed and dated 'Gipsy Moth Coming/Round Cape Horn In a/... gale by James Dixon/15.5.69' (lower left)
    oil on paper
    13¾ x 14½ in. (34.9 x 36.9 cm.)


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    Dixon was a fisherman by trade who took up painting late in life. Like his St Ives counterpart, Alfred Wallis, Dixon never received any formal art training and was taken up by a professional artist who introduced his work to the contemporary art world.

    While St Ives and Alfred Wallis proved inspirational for Ben Nicholson, Tory Island presented a romantic retreat for Derek Hill (see lot 62), the artist who discovered Dixon. Again, this association with the romanticism of the place has led to certain aspects of the artists' works being celebrated above others, in particular their portrayal of the sea and boats.

    A pioneer of long-distance flight, Francis Chichester was the second person to fly solo from England to Australia, in a Gipsy Moth airplane. When he later turned to single-handed long-distance sailing, he named his four boats (II to V) after his plane. It was in Gipsy Moth IV that he achieved lasting fame for his one-stop solo circumnavigation.

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