John Constable – The Thames From Windsor Castle


Mallams Oxford will sell an early drawing by John Constable (1776-1837) on October 18. The Thames from Windsor Castle, a pencil drawing on watermarked paper from 1801, has been unseen on the market for over half a century. Measuring 23 x 34cm, the meticulously observed study of Old Father Thames meandering through the royal borough, was much exhibited in the immediate post-war era. It formed part of an Aldeburgh Festival Exhibition in 1948 (when titled The Thames at Oxford) and an Arts Council exhibition titled Sketches and Drawings by Constable belonging to Dr. H.A.C. Gregory of the following year. In July 1949 it was purchased by Bond Street dealer Agnews at Sotheby’s and three year later (on 27th August 1952) was sold to a descendant of the vendor. Labels for the Art s Council Exhibition and Thomas Agnew & Sons appear to the reverse.

The drawing compares closely to a version of the scene held by the Museum of Art, Rhode Island School of Design.

The estimate is £12,000-15,000.

In 2015, the saleroom unearthed a pencil drawing of the back and shoulders of the artist’s wife Mrs Maria Constable (nee Bicknell). Its whereabouts previously unknown, it sold at £13,000. It too was formerly in the Gregory collection.

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