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AN ENAMEL PLAQUE OF BACCHUS AND ARIADNE BY HENRY BONE, R.A. (BRITISH, 1755-1834) AFTER TIZIANO VECELLIO, CALLED TITIAN (ITALIAN, 1488/1489 - 1576)
AN ENAMEL PLAQUE OF BACCHUS AND ARIADNE BY HENRY BONE, R.A. (BRITISH, 1755-1834) AFTER TIZIANO VECELLIO, CALLED TITIAN (ITALIAN, 1488/1489 - 1576)
AN ENAMEL PLAQUE OF BACCHUS AND ARIADNE BY HENRY BONE, R.A. (BRITISH, 1755-1834) AFTER TIZIANO VECELLIO, CALLED TITIAN (ITALIAN, 1488/1489 - 1576)
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AN ENAMEL PLAQUE OF BACCHUS AND ARIADNE BY HENRY BONE, R.A. (BRITISH, 1755-1834) AFTER TIZIANO VECELLIO, CALLED TITIAN (ITALIAN, 1488/1489 - 1576)
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THE PROPERTY OF A CHARITABLE FOUNDATION
AN ENAMEL PLAQUE OF BACCHUS AND ARIADNE BY HENRY BONE, R.A. (BRITISH, 1755-1834) AFTER TIZIANO VECELLIO, CALLED TITIAN (ITALIAN, 1488/1489 - 1576)

Details
AN ENAMEL PLAQUE OF BACCHUS AND ARIADNE BY HENRY BONE, R.A. (BRITISH, 1755-1834) AFTER TIZIANO VECELLIO, CALLED TITIAN (ITALIAN, 1488/1489 - 1576)
Signed and dated H Bone, 1811 on the obverse (on the urn, lower left) and signed, dated and inscribed in full on the counter-enamel 'painted by Henry Bone R.A. Enamel painter in Ordinary to His Majesty and Enamel painter to His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales, after the Original by Titian in the Collection of the Rt: Honble: Lord Kinnaird &c &c &c.____ This Picture the most celebrated amongst the Bacchanalian Subjects of Titian (when patronis'd by Alphonso Duke of Ferrara) was ultimately brought to this Country from the Villa Aldobrandini in Rome in 1806, from whence it was imported by Willm. Buchanan Esq.____ Size of the Original 6 feet 2 inches, by 5 ---- 10 ---- This Enamel picture w[as] began July 30th 1808 and finish'd March 1811. ___ (HB. Elected a Royal Academician Feby. 11th 1811)'
rectangular, 16 x 18 in. (40.5 x 46 cm.), ornate gilt-wood and gesso frame carved with acanthus leaf and palmette motifs, the oak-leaf roundels in the top corners centred with leopard heads, scroll and acanthus leaf surmount
Provenance
Purchased by George Bowles (d. 1817) of The Grove, Wanstead, from the artist for 2,200 guineas between 15 January and 1 May 1811.
Bequeathed to his niece, The Hon. Anne Rushout (d. unmarried 1849), to whom 'I give to my said Niece Anne Rushout All my Enamel Pictures Painted by Bone' (codicil dated 14 March 1817).
Bequeathed to her nephew Sir Charles Rushout Rushout, 2nd Bt. (1809-1869) of Sezincot House, Gloucestershire and by descent to his son
Sir Charles Fitzgerald Rushout, 3rd Bt. (1840-1879); Phillips & Son, London, Valuable Property Removed from Sezincot House, Gloucestershire by Order of the Executors of Sir Charles Rushout, Bart, 9 December 1879, lot 846 (180 gns, possibly to Colonel Arbuthnot).
The late Christopher Beckett Denison, Esq. of Upper Grosvenor Street; Christie's, London, Friday 26 June (thirteenth day), 1885, lot 1840 (110 gns, as 'From the Rushout and Colonel Arbuthnot's Collections').
With Captain E. B. Woollett, in 1951.
Purchased from him by A. A. Raeburn, New York.
Bequeathed to his widow, Marjorie, later Mrs James A. Mitchell, New York.
Purchased by the National Gallery for $8,000 in 1971.
Christie's, London, 20 February 1973, lot 123 (5,250 gns. to Nyman).
Sotheby's, London, 6 November 1986, lot 124.
Literature
J. P. Neale, Views of the Seats of Noblemen and Gentlemen: in England, Wales, Scotland and Ireland, 1826, III, The Honourable Anne Rushout, listed in the Library, South Side.
H. Walpole, J. Dallaway and G. Vertue, Anecdotes of Painting in England, 1828, III, p. 291.
Jones, Views of the Seats, Mansions, Castles, etc. of Noblemen and Gentlemen, 1829, Wanstead Grove, Essex, The Hon. Anne Rushout, listed in the Library, South Side.
'Annual Biography and Obituary. Memoirs of Celebrated Persons who have died in 1834-1835', 1836, XX, p. 45.
A. Essex, 'Some Account of the Art of Enamel Painting', The London and Edinburgh Philosophical Magazine and Journal of Science, 1837, X, p. 453.
The Times, 15 December 1879, p. 10, column c.
J. J. Rogers, 'Notice of Henry Bone, RA, and his works, together with those of his son, Henry Pierce Bone, and of other members of the family', Journal of the Royal Institution of Cornwall, 1880, VI, no. XXII, p. 292.
W. H. Tregellas, Cornish worthies: Sketches of Some Eminent Cornish Men and Families, London, 1884, I, p. 164.
J. L. Propert, A History of Miniature Art, London, 1887, p. 121.
G. C. Williamson, Portrait Miniatures, London, 1897, p. 112.
J. J. Foster, British Miniature Painters and their Works, London, 1898, p. 63.
J. J. Foster, Miniature Painters British and Foreign, London, 1903, II, p. 106.
G. C. Williamson, The History of Portrait Miniatures 1531-1860, London, 1904, I, p. 66.
D. Heath, Miniatures, London, 1905, p. 289.
H. Clouzot, Dictionnaire des miniaturistes sur émail, Paris, 1924, pp. 27 and 30.
S. Hand, Signed Miniatures, London, 1925, p. 13.
The Memoirs of Susan Sibbald (1783-1812), ed. F. P. Hette, London, 1926, p. 141.
J. J. Foster, A Dictionary of Painters of Miniatures (1525-1850), London, 1926, pp. 27-28.
J. Nachemsohn, Signed Enamel Miniatures of the XVIIth, XVIIIth & XIXth Centuries, London, 1926, p. 35.
B. Long, British Miniaturists, London, 1929, p. 37.
G. Reynolds, English Portrait Miniatures, Cambridge, 1952, p. 151.
C. Gould, The Sixteenth and Seventeenth Century Venetian School, London, 1959, p. 104.
L. R. Schidlof, The Miniature in Europe, Graz, 1964, I, p. 93.
The Diary of Joseph Farington 1793-1821, ed. K. Garlick, A. Macintyre and K. Cave, Yale, 1978-1989, XI, pp. 3854 (15 January 1811), 3922 (1 May 1811) and 3932 (17 May 1811).
D. Foskett, British Portrait Miniatures, London, 1968, p. 167.
D. Foskett, A Dictionary of British Miniature Painters, London, 1972, I, p. 171.
M. Blaker, 'Painting Miniatures In Enamel', The Artist, January 1974, vol. 86, no. 5, p. 137.
D. Foskett, Miniatures Dictionary and Guide, Woodbridge, 1987, p. 195.
E. Speel, Dictionary of Enamelling, Aldershot, 1998, p. 13.
R. Walker, 'Henry Bone's Pencil Drawings in the National Portrait Gallery', The Walpole Society, 1999, LXI, pp. 305-308, 359, no. 676, the preparatory drawing illustrated fig. 188.
S. Coffin and B. Hofstetter, The Gilbert Collection. Portrait Miniatures in Enamel, London, 2000, p. 9.
Exhibition catalogue Capolavori in smalto e avorio, Milan, Museo Bagatti Valsecchi, 2004-2005, p. 33 footnote 49.
E. Speel, Painted Enamels: An Illustrated Survey, 1500-1920, Aldershot, 2008, p. 114 (fig. 28 illustrating the preparatory drawing). C. Arturi and F. R. Phillips, The Arturi Phillips Collection. A Catalogue of Portrait Miniatures dating from 1588 to 2004, 2010, p. 272.
S. Duffy and C. M. Vogtherr, Miniatures in the Wallace Collection, London, 2010, p. 158.
H. Williams, Enamels of the World 1700-2000, London, 2010, p. 272.
R. Walker 'Henry Bone', Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, Online edition, 2004-2013, p. 2.
Exhibited
Truro, Royal Institution of Cornwall, 1951, John Opie and Henry Bone: an exhibition of paintings and miniatures organised by the Royal Institution of Cornwall, Addenda no. 1 (lent by Captain E. B. Woollett).
London, National Gallery, 1969, exhibited alongside the original by Titian.

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Lot Essay

Contemporary accounts give a fascinating insight into the life and work of Henry Bone, R.A. and in particular to the creation, sale, payment and legacy of his masterpiece 'Bacchus and Ariadne'.

Henry Bone was a Cornishman, born in Truro, and in 1770 he went to Plymouth to paint on hard paste china for the Cookworthy factory. In 1772 he continued his apprenticeship with Richard Champion in Bristol but when the firm went bankrupt he went to London where he found work enamel painting watch-cases, shirt buttons, brooches, pins and lockets for Messers. Randle, Jackson and White in Paternoster Row. In 1781, he exhibited an enamel portrait of his wife at the Royal Academy (no. 328) which measured 64 mm. (2 in.) in height and two years later he exhibited a self-portrait at the Royal Academy, but continued to work for London jewellers. He painted miniatures on ivory and enamels in his spare time, working mainly on his Royal Academy diploma piece 'Nymph and Cupid', dated 1811. It was the largest enamel painting of its genre ever executed up to that time, measuring 203 x 128 mm. (8 x 5 1/16 in.) and still hangs in Burlington House today. His work caught the eye of the Prince of Wales who bought his enamel of the Earl of Eglintoun in 1797 (R. Walker, Miniatures in the Collection of her Majesty the Queen, Cambridge, 1992, no. 778, ill. p. 291) and by 1801, his success as an enamellist was cemented when he was officially appointed Enamel Painter to the Prince of Wales, later Prince Regent, and to George III. He was also made an associate of the Royal Academy and on 11 February 1811 he was elected a Royal Academician.

It was Bone's desire to push the boundaries of size in enamel painting that led to his greatest and largest work, 'Bacchus and Ariadne', measuring 40.5 x 46 cm. (16 x 18 ins.). Bone had painted his pictures on large enamel plates made for him by a jeweller called Long from Red Lion Street, Clerkenwell. He was later taught how to make them by Edward Wedlake Brayley (1773-1845) who was an apprentice in the enamelling trade but is best remembered as an English antiquary and topographer. Brayley's help gave Bone the chance to experiment with the size of plates and having successfully painted 'Jupiter and Io' after Correggio in 1801, measuring 240 x 156 mm. (9½ x 6¼ in., R. Walker, op. cit., no. 787, ill. p. 303), he branched out into copying Old Masters. It was the arrival of Titian's 'Bacchus and Ariadne' in London that was to lead to his masterpiece. The picture had been bought by Mr Irvine on behalf of the agent William Buchanan who had it sent to England from Rome and sold it to Lord Kinnaird in 1806 or 1807. It was then sold privately to Mr Basely by Delahunte before the Kinnaird sale held at Phillips, London, 3-5 March 1813 where it was included as lot 88 and was subsequently purchased by the National Gallery in 1826.

Bone's method was to produce a preliminary drawing in pencil first, transfer it to tracing paper in ink and finally to a primed copper or brass plate to be painted and fired into the finished enamel. These drawings were later pasted into three large albums and were acquired for the National Portrait Gallery towards the end of the nineteenth century. The second volume contains copies of the Old Masters and Richard Walker states 'One of the most striking is on page 33 of volume II, a folded copy of Titian's 'Bacchus and Ariadne', then belonging to Lord Kinnaird and now in the National Gallery'. (R. Walker, 'Henry Bone's Pencil Drawings', The Walpole Society, 1999, LXI, pp. 305-6, ill. fig. 188). The drawing measures 16 3/8 x 17 in. (41.6 x 45.6 cm).
Joseph Farington in his diary for 15th January 1811 gives the first account of the viewing of the enamel: 'Bone I called on & saw His large enamel of 'Bacchus & Ariadne' from Titian. It was fixed in a sumptuous frame which He supposed wd. Cost more than 100. He told me he should not dispose of this enamel for less than two thousand guineas. He said he had had it in hand for three years, working upon it occasionally. He told me that for an enamel of a much smaller size a Copy from a picture by Leonard Da Vinci, Lord Suffolk paid him 600 guineas.' On Wednesday 1 May 1811, Farington wrote 'Bone called, & told me He Had sold His enamel picture, 18 inches by 16 in size, of Bacchus &Ariadne after the original by Titian from Aldobrandini Villa in Rome, now in the Collection of Lord Kinnaird. The Price at which He sold it is 2200 guineas including the Frame, which leaves Him a clear receipt of something more than 2000 guineas. Not having been able to exhibit it on acct. of it being left with the Prince of Wales for His Royal Highnesses inspection. He said he should exhibit it for a time at his own House& shd. issue cards for that purpose.' On 17 May 1811, Farington continues 'Mrs. & two Misses Wilson called & I went with them and Dr. Fisher to Bone's to see His enamel picture of Bacchus and Ariadne from Titian, we found the room filled with Ladies assembled for this purpose.' (The Diary of Joseph Farington 1793-1821, ed. Garlick, Macintyre and Cave, Yale, 1978-1989, XI, pp. 3854, 3922 and 3932). In fact, over 4,000 people went to Bone's studio in Berners Street to see the 'Bacchus and Ariadne' ('The Annual Biography and Obituary', 1836, XX, p. 45).

Henry Bone's obituary records 'On his completion of this splendid work, he showed it to several of his friends and patrons, and amongst the number, to the late George Bowles, Esq., of Wanstead, who, upon inquiring whether it was done by commission, and being told that it was not, but that the artist did not feel at liberty to make any arrangement respecting it until he had informed the Prince of Wales of its completion, said that if his Royal Highness did not become the purchaser he would, but begged to be informed in how long time he should know. A period of a week was named; and Mr. Bowles then invited the artist to breakfast with him in Cavendish Square at the expiration of the time, when he gave a draft for part of the money, and in a few days paid the balance, amounting to the sum of 2200 guineas.'. ('The Annual Biography and Obituary', 1836, XX, p. 45). However, W. H. Tregellas records that the sum of 2,200 guineas was paid in the form of a cheque from Fauntelroy's Bank which Bone cashed on the way home, and that the very next day the bank was made bankrupt (Some Cornish Worthies, London, 1884, p. 164).

George Bowles (d. 1817), was the son of Sir Humphrey Bowles (d. 1784) and brother of Rebecca Rushout, later Lady Northwick (1740-1818) and uncle to her three daughters, Anne, Harriet and Elizabeth, known as the Rushout Sisters. The Bowles family fortune derived from the manufacture of glass and George Bowles who inherited The Grove, Wanstead on his father's death, was a significant patron of the arts and in particular Angelica Kauffman (1741-1807). He was the largest collector of her works in England, amassing over fifty of her paintings. He also commissioned and collected miniatures by Richard Cosway, R.A. and Andrew Plimer (a portrait of Bowles by Plimer was sold Christie's, London, 28 May 2002, lot 138 and two enamels by Henry Bone of this Plimer portrait are known; one sold Sotheby's, London, 10 November 1979, lot 83 and another, Sotheby's, London, 9 July 1984, lot 70B) and he was an enthusiastic collector of Bone's work.

Bowles's collection of Bone's enamels can be divided into two groups; the copies of family portraits including amongst others the large enamel of the three Rushout Sisters, dated August 1809, after Andrew Plimer (sold Bonhams, 28 June 2012, lot 97, £55,000) and the eight enamels copied after Old Masters that Bowles bought from Henry Bone, R.A. including 'Bacchus and Ariadne' and 'An allegory showing the effects of war; after Sir Peter Paul Rubens' sold Sotheby's, 27 May 2004, lot 62 where the counter-enamel was signed, dated and inscribed 'Purchased by George Bowles Esquire May 28 1813. The possessor of the Enamel /*(18 inches by 16) *Bacchus and Ariadne after Titian 1811'.

George Bowles and the Prince of Wales shared the same taste for Bone's work and they both owned copies of his enamel after Cantarini's 'Holy Family with an Angel', for which the Prince of Wales paid 120 guineas, with an additional 15 guineas for the frame and box in 1804 (see R. Walker, supra 1992, no. 788, p. 302, ill. p. 304). This appears to be the first work Bowles ordered from Bone. The vast gilt-wood frame accompanying the 'Bacchus and Ariadne', elaborately carved with anthemion and scroll motifs and lion's masks within wreaths, is reminiscent of the Carlton House taste that the Prince of Wales enjoyed. The Prince of Wales commissioned frames from Rundell, Bridge and Rundell to house his Bone enamels, some of which hung in his private bedroom at Carlton House. A Henry Bone enamel of 'The Assumption of the Virgin' after Guido Reni, commissioned by Lady Northwick, dated 1809 (sold Christie's, London, 10 July 1990, lot 25) is framed in a similar elaborately carved gilt-wood frame with the corners applied with acanthus and Prince of Wales's feathers.

A watercolour of an interior depicting the 'Bacchus and Ariadne' enamel (recognizable from the vast gilt-wood frame) hanging in a Library Music Room, circa 1830 (illustrated opposite) was sold Christie's, London, 17 November 1994, lot 6. The interior was described as being at Northwick Park, home to Lord Northwick (Anne Rushout's brother-in-law) but it is more likely that the scene depicting a seated lady surrounded by a grand piano, a small organ and a music stand, the walls hung with landscapes, is indeed a scene at The Grove, Wanstead, home to Anne Rushout who inherited the Bone enamels in 1817 on the death of her uncle, George Bowles. Anne Rushout was a talented watercolourist herself and a signed watercolour of a 'View on the Wye' was sold Christie's South Kensington, 24 November 2009, lot 344.

Between 1967 and 1969, the National Gallery carried out a conservation programme on Titian's 'Bacchus and Ariadne' and on removing the thick, amber-coloured varnish, Titian's bright and intense colours were revealed in their glory. The Bone 'Bacchus and Ariadne' was lent by Mrs Marjorie Mitchell, its then owner, and exhibited alongside the Titian in 1969. The close comparison of colours suggested that Bone must have made his copy on the painting's arrival in London, at which time a previous varnish had been removed, as the colours were similarly rich in depth. The News of Literature and Fashion for 15 April 1826 records that 'The real truth is that the Bacchus and Ariadne has had a great many tricks played with it. When at Rome, it was considered a fine picture, but exceedingly brown. When it came to England it was cleaned so effectually as to have become a perfectly blue picture, and now relapsed into dinginess again [...]'. (A. Lucas and J. Plesters, Titian's Bacchus and Ariadne, National Gallery Technical Bulletin Volume 2, 1978).

Bone has been called the 'Prince of Enamellers' and his output was prolific. Two of his sons, Henry Pierce Bone and Robert Trewick Bone continued in his footsteps and J. J. Rogers published a large catalogue of 1,063 works of the Bone family, attributing 486 works to Henry Bone, R.A. (Journal of the Royal Institution of Cornwall, 1880, VI. no. XX, pp. 287-318). He continued to exhibit at the Royal Academy until 1832 and produced many historical copies after Old Masters and portraits of the day. These series, as Sarah Coffin notes, were part of a broader enthusiasm for historicism in the arts at this time. (S. Coffin and B. Hofstetter, The Gilbert Collection, Portrait Miniatures in Enamel, London, 2000, p. 41). A commission for the Russell family at Woburn Abbey dating to 1823-24 and a series of historical portraits from the time of Elizabeth I, 85 in total, were his other major life works. The 'Portraits of illustrious characters in the reign of Queen Elizabeth' were exhibited in his studio in 1822 and again at the British Institution after his death. The group had been valued at £10,000 but the nation turned down the offer to buy them at £4,000 and they were sold by Christie's on 22 April 1836, two years after his death, on the instructions of his executors. His failing eyesight prompted a move to Clarendon Square, Somerstown, London in 1831 and he reluctantly received the Royal Academy pension. He died of paralysis on 17 December 1834.

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