Wednesday 20 July 2022

Lot 7

Edward William Cooke RA,   British 1811-1880- A collection of 88 pencil...

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Lot 7

Edward William Cooke RA,
British 1811-1880-

A collection of 88 pencil...

Price Realised: Unsold Lot

Estimate: £6,000 - £8,000

Price realised is hammer price plus fees (30% Buyers Premium inclusive of VAT).

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Lot 7


Edward William Cooke RA,


British 1811-1880-

A collection of 88 pencil drawings of Egyptian landscapes, river views and artefacts including: Dendera; The Gate of the Nile; Philae; Gebel El Silsilah; Gebel Aboofayeda; Keneh; Bibbeh; Views and architectural studies of Venice and figure studies and architectural studies executed in Rouen, Avignon, Capua, Rome, Ravello, Ferrara, Urbino, Florence, Trento and Capua including: The catacombs of Saint Sebastian, Rome; The Sistine Chapel, Rome; St Peter's, Rome; San Antonio, Padua; Door of Santa Maria del Orta, Venice; San Polo, Venice; San Marco, Venice; Details of Palazzo Pisani, Venice; and Capitals in the Palazzo Ducale, Venice,


the majority inscribed with titles, some annotated with notes, and some dated variously 3 October 1851 to 27 February 1874, some annotated with numbers,


pencil, some within a pencil border, on paper, six on tracing paper, one on blue paper, two on reverse of printed paper, four on card,


17.5 x 10.1 cm and smaller, eighty-eight (88), (mounted, unframed, many in common mounts).


Provenance: Anon. sale, Sotheby's, London, 10 July 1997, lot 147 (as An album of sketches.).; The Collection of Sir Nicholas Goodison.


Note: Edward William Cooke was born into an artistic family, the son of the engraver George Cooke (1781-1834). He was a talented child artist and by the age of nine was already executing wood engravings of plants for publication. At the age of fourteen he met Clarkson Stanfield, RA (1793-1867) and began a lifelong interest in sketching boats. He also began to study architecture under Augustus Pugin (1812-1852), but did not pursue this as he preferred marine subjects. He was elected an Associate of the Royal Academy in 1851 and a full member in 1864. The other great interests in his life were botany and geology, and he was elected a Fellow of the Linnaean Society in 1857, Fellow of the Geological Society in 1862 and Fellow of the Royal Society (an unusual accolade for a painter) in 1863.


Cooke was an inveterate traveller, visiting Europe on many occasions between 1824 and 1879 (for further details see J. Munday, E.W. Cooke 1811-1880 A Man of his Time, Woodbridge, Suffolk, 1996, p. 364, appendix 4) and a dedicated diarist, beginning when he was 17 and continuing until a few weeks before his death. His itinerary on his many foreign trips are carefully recorded and these match up with the dates on his sketches.


The drawings which are dated October are from his second Venetian tour in 1851. He left Folkestone on 11 August, travelling to Paris and then on to the Swiss Alps, journeying on to the Italian lakes and then Verona and Venice where John and Effie Ruskin were also staying. He remained there before returning home in December. Thirteen drawings are from a three-and-a-half-month trip, beginning on 1 January to Egypt, see Munday, op.cit., pp. 207 for a detailed itinerary. Cookes expedition to Egypt was to be a geological-cum-antiquarian excursion as well as a painting trip along the Nile. He travelled on the P & O steamer Simla, in the company of Professor Richard Owen and Mr John Fowler, engineering adviser to Khedive Ismail Pasha and encountered other British visitors such as the artist Hercules Brabazon Brabazon (1821-1906). Cooke was clearly delighted by the sites of Egypt and he planned another painting trip there at the end of the same year. The remaining sketches are figure and architectural studies, many of buildings in Venice and these show his continued interest in architecture.


His obituary, published in The Gardeners Chronicle, 10 January 1880 concluded, In his pictures… the work by which he achieved fame and fortune-his mental characteristics may be traced- his love of truth, his accurate observation and fidelity in reproducing them. Many of his pictures are scientific lesson-books: the dip of the strata, the grains of the sand, the shapes of the leaves, the curvature of the trunks of the Palm trees, the form of rain clouds, the line of the waves, and hundreds of such instances betoken, not only the artist, but the man of science. There is an amount of absolute truth about them, apart from imagination, which will give his picture a permanent value beyond that of many of his contemporaries. The present group of sketches, carefully preserved and mounted, reveal Cookes skilful draughtsmanship and the discerning mind of an archetypal enquiring Victorian gentleman.

Buyer's Premium

The buyer shall pay the hammer price together with a premium thereon of 26% up to £20,000 (31.2% inclusive of VAT), 25% from £20,001 - £500,000 (30% inclusive of VAT), 20% from £500,001 thereafter (24% inclusive of VAT). The premium price is subject to VAT at the standard rate.

VAT is not charged on the hammer price unless it is stated that there is 'VAT applicable on the hammer price at the end of the description. Buyer's premium is subject to VAT.

Qualifying living artists and the descendants of artists deceased within the last 70 years are entitled to receive a re-sale royalty each time their work is bought through an auction house or art market professional.

It applies to lots with hammer value over €1,000 as follows:
0 to €50,000 - 4%, €50,000.01 to €200,000 - 3%
€200,000.01 to €350,000 - 1%,
€350,000.01 to €500,000 - 0.5%
Exceeding €500,000 - 0.25%
ARR is capped at €12,500

Please note ARR is calculated in euros. Auctioneers will apply current exchange rates.

Export of goods

Buyers intending to export goods should ascertain whether an export licence is required before bidding. Export licences are issued by Arts Council England and application forms can be obtained from its Export Licensing Unit. Details can be found on the ACE website or by phoning ACE on 020 7973 5188. The need for import licences varies from country to country and you should acquaint yourself with all relevant local requirements and provisions before bidding. The refusal of any such licences shall not permit the cancelling of any sale nor allow any delay in making full payment for the lot.

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