• Cabinet d'un Amateur Européen auction at Christies

    Sale 7822

    Cabinet d'un Amateur Européen

    9 December 2009, London, King Street

  • Lot 332

    William Etty (British, 1787-1849)

    Venus and her Satellites (Venus at her toilet)


    William Etty (British, 1787-1849)
    Venus and her Satellites (Venus at her toilet)
    oil on panel
    31¾ x 43½ in. (80.6 x 111 cm.)

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    Dennis Farr (op. cit.) lists two other versions of this composition, both on panel. The first was exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1835 and was subsequently recorded in the collection of Anthony Devas. The second is in the collection of the City Art Gallery, York.

    Farr describes the figures in the R.A. version as falling into a 'smooth elliptical composition, with those of Mars and a Raphaelesque Homeric musician acting as repoussoirs ... the arms and bodies of the figures form a sinewy internal pattern, rather more complex than before ... Blond in tone, the painting is suffused with light, and the white-clad Venus acts as a focal point around which the darker colours of her attendants' robes are assembled. The woman holding Mars's sheild has an amethyst robe, while the three Graces form a pattern of yellow, pink and ultramarine; the musician's brown mantle balances the more sombre tones of Mars's armour' (loc. cit. pp. 73-4).

    Special Notice

    VAT rate of 5% is payable on hammer price and at 15% on the buyer's premium


    Chapman Bros; sale, Christie's, London, 8 December 1913, lot 67 (20 gns. to Mitchell).
    Galeria de Londres, Buenos Aires.
    Domingo Edwards II, Santiago, Chile, by 1935 and by descent.
    Anonymous sale; Sotheby's, New York, 22 February 1989, lot 47, where acquired by the present owner.


    D. Farr, William Etty, London, 1958, pl. 56, illustrates the Royal Academy version.