Overview

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SAMUEL SCOTT (LONDON C. 1702-1772 BATH)
SAMUEL SCOTT (LONDON C. 1702-1772 BATH)
SAMUEL SCOTT (LONDON C. 1702-1772 BATH)
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SAMUEL SCOTT (LONDON C. 1702-1772 BATH)
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PROPERTY OF A LADY
SAMUEL SCOTT (LONDON C. 1702-1772 BATH)

View of the Thames at Wapping

Details
SAMUEL SCOTT (LONDON C. 1702-1772 BATH)
View of the Thames at Wapping
oil on canvas
21 ¾ x 44 in. (55.3 x 111.8 cm.)
Provenance
(Probably) Commissioned by Lady Catherine Pelham (d.1780) circa 1740, and by descent to her daughter's husband,
Henry Pelham-Clinton, 2nd Duke of Newcastle-under-Lyne (1720-1794), and by descent to the following,
Henrietta Adela Pelham-Clinton (née Hope), Duchess of Newcastle (1843-1913), The Oaks, Woodford; (†) Christie's, London, 25 July 1913, lot 26 (175 gns. to the following),
with Pawsey and Payne, London.
A.B. Wilson, London; Christie's, London, 18 June 1917, lot 53 (157 gns. to the following),
with Leggatt's, London.
with Agnew's, London, 1918.
with Knoedler's, London, from whom acquired by the father of the present owner.
Literature
R. Kingzett, 'A Catalogue of the Works of Samuel Scott', Walpole Society, XLVIII, 1982, p. 40, no. D, pl. 13a.
Exhibited
London, Guildhall, Samuel Scott Bicentenary: Paintings, Drawings and Engravings, 4 May-3 June 1972, no. 19.

Brought to you by

Clementine Sinclair
Clementine Sinclair Specialist, Head of Evening Sale

Lot Essay

This lively view of Wapping Old Stairs seen from the river looking east towards Limehouse gives centre stage to the jumble of shops, houses and warehouses along the banks of the Thames. Arguably, this makes it Scott’s first venture as a painter of townscapes, his previous works having relegated the teeming life of the river bank to a more minor compositional element. The artist was attracted to this stretch of the Thames in the period following 1732, when he was commissioned to produce a series of works for the East India Company. The size of the Company’s ships meant that they had to unload their cargoes in this area, with warehouses in Shadwell, wharves at Deptford and a ship building yard at Blackwall.
Situated as it is at the bend of the river to the west of Greenwich, it is highly probably that the present work was commissioned by Lady Catherine Pelham, who had been granted the Rangership of Greenwich Park in 1730 and took up residence in the Rangers Lodge at some point in the early 1740s. On her death, the painting would have entered the collection of the 2nd Duke of Newcastle, husband of her daughter Catherine, as her own sons had died in infancy and Catherine had also pre-deceased her mother.
A preparatory drawing for the watermen in the left-foreground is held in the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, Four Figures of Watermen (fig. 1). Scott evidently felt that these were especially successful motifs, as he included different combinations of the men in two other views of Wapping, both from the 1730s and his earliest view of Tower of London, dated 1746.

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