Overview

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Details
ALFRED WILLIAM HUNT, R.W.S. (LIVERPOOL 1830-1896 LONDON)
Lucerne
pencil, watercolour and bodycolour with scratching out
13 ¾ x 10 ¼ in. (35 x 51.5 cm.)
Provenance
James Leathart.
with Fine Art Society, London, by 1884.
Norman Charles Cookson, by 1897.
Anonymous sale; Bonham's, London, 22 July 1981, lot 161.
with Chris Beetles, London, where purchased by the present owner.
Literature
Athenaeum, 30 April 1864, p. 618.
C. Newall, Victorian Watercolours, Oxford, 1987, p. 16.
Exhibited
London, Old Water-Colour Society, 1864, no. 127.
London, Fine Art Society, Pictures and Drawings of Mr Alfred W. Hunt, 1884, no. 39 or 67.
Liverpool, Walker Art Gallery, Memorial Exhibition of Pictures by Alfred W. Hunt, R.W.S., 1897, no. 106.
New Haven, Yale Center for British Art, and Oxford, Ashmolean Museum, The Poetry of Truth: Alfred William Hunt and the Art of Landscape, September 2004 - April 2005, no. 16.

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Lot Essay


Hunt was in Switzerland in July and August of 1859, when he made this drawing standing on the bridge over the Reuss in the centre of Lucerne. In the centre of the composition is the famous Kapellbrücke, the covered bridge which crosses the Reuss just before it meets the lake, with the distinctive octagonal tower of the Wasserturm just behind. Turner had painted a very similar view in 1843, and it has been suggested that Hunt organised his tour of Germany and Switzerland with the intention of visiting places known from Turner's drawings, or recommended by Ruskin. When the present drawing was exhibited at the Old Water-Colour Society in 1864, it was loaned by Leathart, and was admired by the critic for the Athenaeum for its 'force and brilliancy as well as the truth [that] commend it to all'.

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