2 More
This lot has been imported from outside of the UK … Read more Property from a Distinguished Private Collection

Portrait of William Lock (1804-1832), as a child, full-length, with a dog

Portrait of William Lock (1804-1832), as a child, full-length, with a dog
oil on canvas
50 x 40 in. (127 x 101.6 cm.)
Commissioned by the sitter's father, William Lock (1767-1847), and by descent to his daughter, the sitter's sister,
Elizabeth, Lady Wallscourt (1806-1877) and her husband, Joseph Blake, 3rd Baron Wallscourt (1797-1849).
Sir Joseph B. Robinson (1840-1929), Cape Town; his sale, Christie's, London, 6 July 1923, lot 16.
Angela Gonzale Alzaga de Ledesma, inherited in 1940, by whom gifted to the following,
Amalia Lacroze de Fortabat, Argentina, and by descent.
W. Pickering, ed., The Bijou or Annual of Literature and the Arts, 1828, London, illustrated opposite p. 139.
Lord R. Sutherland Gower, Sir Thomas Lawrence P.R.A., with a catalogue of the artist's exhibited and engraved works, London, 1900, p. 145.
Sir W. Armstrong, Lawrence, London, 1913, p. 147.
Vittoria, Duchess of Sermoneta, The Locks of Norbury; the story of a remarkable family in the XVIIIth and XIXth centuries, London, 1940, p. 349.
K.J. Garlick, ‘A catalogue of the paintings, drawings and pastels of Sir Thomas Lawrence’, Walpole Society, XXXIX, 1964, p. 129.
K.J. Garlick, 'Lawrence's Portraits of the Locks, the Angersteins and the Boucherettes', The Burlington Magazine, CX, no. 789, December 1968, pp. 668, 670 and 673, fig. 33.
K.J. Garlick, Sir Thomas Lawrence: A Complete Catalogue of the Oil Paintings, Oxford, 1989, p. 227, no. 504, illustrated.
London, The Royal Academy, The Exhibition of the Royal Academy, 1814, no. 277.
London, The New Gallery, Artists of the British and Continental Schools, 1897-1898, no. 163.
Special notice

This lot has been imported from outside of the UK for sale and placed under the Temporary Admission regime. Import VAT is payable at 5% on the hammer price. VAT at 20% will be added to the buyer’s premium but will not be shown separately on our invoice.

Brought to you by

Clementine Sinclair
Clementine Sinclair Director, Head of Department

Check the condition report or get in touch for additional information about this

If you wish to view the condition report of this lot, please sign in to your account.

Sign in
View condition report

Lot Essay

Painted in 1814 and exhibited at the Royal Academy in the same year, this dynamic portrait of the young William Lock III (1804-32) is a fine example of Lawrence's portraiture of children that contributed greatly to the artist's growing fame and emerging reputation as the leading portraitist in Europe in the first quarter of the eighteenth-century. Throughout his career, Lawrence often returned to portraits of his patrons' children, in between his work at the courts of Europe, producing many of the defining images of the age, including such celebrated works as The Children of John Angerstein (1807; Berlin, Gemäldegalerie), Laura Anne and Emily Calmady (1823-24; New York, The Metropolitan Museum of Art) and the portrait of Charles William Lambton (1825; London, National Gallery).
The sitter was the son of William Lock II (1767-1847) and his wife Elizabeth Jennings, daughter of the collector John Constantine Jennings. William's father was an accomplished draughtsman in the style of Henry Fuseli, with whom he studied, but later abandoned his artistic career. William's grandfather, William Lock (1732-1810) of Norbury Park, Surrey, a connoisseur and art critic, was one of Lawrence's most important patrons and supporters from the artist's early years in London. The sitter, an army officer, who served as a Captain in the Life Guards, was renowned for his personal beauty and skill as an amateur artist. He published Illustrations of the Works of Lord Byron in 1830 after his own designs before drowning in Lake Como in 1832. He married Selina Tollemache, daughter of Admiral Tollemache, with whom he had one daughter who was born after Lock's premature death.
The Lock family were one of Lawrence’s most enduring patrons, providing the artist with three generations of sitters, portraits of whom would span his whole career. In 1790, the twenty-one year old Lawrence painted the remarkable unfinished portrait of William Lock (Boston, Museum of Fine Arts), a virtuosic performance with the brush, thought to have been executed in a single sitting and displaying the young artist’s precocious ability to capture a likeness at disarming speed. The sitter’s parents both sat to Lawrence: his father, William Lock II, for a portrait exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1791 (untraced) and, later, for the profile study drawing preserved in the Yale Center for British Art (New Haven; 1808); and his mother for the full-length (later cut down) exhibited at the Academy in 1799. William's sister Elizabeth (1805-1877), Lady Wallscourt, who owned this picture, sat to Lawrence in 1825 for the masterful portrait in which she is shown singing while playing a guitar (Christie's, London, 8 July 2021, lot 11, sold for £450,000). Finally, a year before Lawrence’s death in 1830, he executed a portrait on panel of William's grandmother, Mrs William Lock of Norbury, now in the Nelson Atkins Museum of Art, Kansas City, Missouri.
The picture was once in the collection of Sir Joseph Robinson (1840–1929), the South African randlord, who acquired Dudley House on Park Lane in 1895. After giving up the house in 1910 he returned to South Africa and eventually decided to put his pictures up for sale at Christie's in 1923. On 5 July, the day before the auction when the collection was already on view, the octogenarian Robinson, now in a wheelchair, came to King Street, and in Ellis Waterhouse’s words: ‘fell in love with the collection he had not seen for so long’ (1958 Royal Academy exhibition catalogue, p. ix). It was, however, too late to stop the sale, so Sir Joseph placed high reserves on all the lots, with the result that only eleven of these were sold, one being this portrait of William Lock III, which fetched 4,050 guineas. Others included Constable’s full-scale sketch for The Opening of Westminster Bridge (lot 3, 2,400 guineas; London, Tate Britain), Gainsborough’s General Bligh (3,100 guineas) and a portrait identified as of Rembrandt’s sister (4,300 guineas). 

More from Old Masters Evening Sale

View All
View All