Product Description & Reviews
(1776 or later). Original ink wash, heightened with white, calligraphic title beneath `The Death of General Wolfe' with an original ink wash vignette of a grief-stricken putti leaning against a memorial urn on a pedestal, the pedestal with the lettering `AEt/ 35', to the left of the pedestal a drum, two standards and a cannon barrel, this vignette flanked by the words `Obiit Patriam pugnando.'. Inscribed on verso: `Indian Ink drawing by my grandfather George Kendall b. 21 Mar 1753/ Henry (?) Kendall 15 Feb 1895'. Laid paper, mounted on 19th-century board. Sheet size: 19 1/8 x 24 1/2 inches. Sheet size: Image size: 17 1/2 x 24 1/2 inches. A very fine, probably 18th-century, reworking of William Woolett's engraving of Benjamin West's famous work. When West exhibited the original of this image, at the Royal Academy in 1771, it caused a sensation: for the first time a major work by a major artist depicted modern heroes playing out recent events in modern costume. Sir Joshua Reynolds, at first antagonistic to the project, when given a private preview of the work remarked `I forsee that this picture will not only become one of the most popular, but occasion a revolution in art'. The picture was in instant success and the engraving by William Woolett which followed `one of the most commercially successful prints ever published' (H. von Erffa & A. Staley The Paintings of Benjamin West.1986, p.213). The present reworking of Woolett's engraving is of a very high quality, and to judge from its dimensions, is not worked over a traced base but a true redrawing. The published work is approximately 5% smaller than the drawing. If not a professional artist, then George Kendall was clearly a draughtsman of great ability, but unfortunately no information, other than that provided by his grandson, is available."Wolfe went forward to some high ground on the right, where he had an advanced post of the Louisbourg grenadiers much exposed to the enemy's sharpshooters."
Features & Highlights
|Item Size:||24.5 x 17.5 x 17.5 inches|
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