Costumes for the Mikado (1926) by Charles RickettsRoyal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery
This selection of work consists of a range of styles and mediums dating back to the early 18th century and up to the late 20th century. They depict a diverse set of scenes, portraits, and still-lifes. Many of these works were added to RAMM's fine art collection with the aid of art funds.
William 3rd Viscount Courtenay (1792/1793) by Richard CoswayRoyal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery
Honiton, Devon (1790/1795) by Thomas RowlandsonRoyal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery
Rowlandson made frequent journeys to the West Country to stay with his friend Matthew Mitchell of Hengar House, Bodmin. He painted views of Exeter, Honiton, Plymouth, and north Devon.
The South Gate, Exeter (1805/1810) by Thomas RowlandsonRoyal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery
Prior to its demolition in 1819 Exeter’s South Gate was one of the grandest medieval town gates standing in southern England. This watercolour is especially valuable in showing the suburbs outside the gate, rebuilt from about 1657 following the ravages of the Civil War.
A Sermon in Exeter Cathedral (1790/1795) by Thomas RowlandsonRoyal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery
Self-Portrait of the Artist in his Studio (1734) by Francis HaymanRoyal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery
This portrait is of the artist Francis Hayman. It was originally part of a larger painting including a women believed to be his first wife (RAMM 241/2007) but the portraits had become separated at some point until the they were reunited in 2007.
John Rolle Walter (1753) by Pompeo Girolamo BatoniRoyal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery
John Rolle Walter served both as MP for Exeter (1754-76) and for Devon (1776-79). The second son of John Rolle of Stevenstone and Isabella Charlotte née Walter, he took the name of Walter on inheritance of his mother’s estates in Oxfordshire. He travelled to Italy on the Grand Tour in 1752-53 and was painted by Batoni in Rome.
Portrait of a Lady (probably the wife of the artist) (1734) by Francis HaymanRoyal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery
This portrait is probably of the artist’s first wife. It was originally part of the early self-portrait of the artist in his studio (RAMM 5/1963/7) and had become separated at some point. It was recently rediscovered in the USA and in 2007 was reunited with the other section.
Richard Crosse, miniture painter (1765) by Self-portraitRoyal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery
Richard Crosse was born at Knowle, near Cullompton in 1742. Though deaf and mute from birth his talents were soon recognised and in the late 1750s he moved to London. For the next half century he exhibited at the Society of Artists, the Free Society of Artists and the Royal Academy. As a miniaturist he created some of the most striking portrait images of his age.
Captain Charles Proby (1753) by Sir Joshua Reynolds, P.R.A.Royal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery
Joshua Reynolds began his career in the 1740s in Devonshire. After his return from the Grand Tour in 1753 he settled in London and was based there for the rest of his life. Many of his portraits have been identified as he was a methodical recorder of appointments and sitters.
Portrait of James Northcote, aged 78 (1824) by James RamsayRoyal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery
Artist and author, James Northcote was born in Plymouth but in 1771 left for London and became a studio assistant to Joshua Reynolds. A tour of Italy in 1777 launched a successful London based career as a portrait and history painter.
Mrs Thomas Selby (1850/1854) by Samuel Cousins, R.A.Royal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery
The complimenting portraits of Mr. Thomas Selby and his wife Charlette Emily Steel commemorate a lifelong friendship with the artist, Samuel Cousins. In their younger years, Mr. Selby and Cousins would travel extensively around Europe together. Mr. Selby’s portrait was displayed in the Royal Academy in 1854.
The Fair Toxophilites (or English Archers, Nineteenth Century) (1872) by William Powell FrithRoyal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery
William Frith’s handsome young lady archers inhabit both a private and public pictorial world. Privately, English Archers, Nineteenth Century was created as a fanciful representation of the artist’s three daughters, Alice, Fanny and Louisa (left to right). Above all, the painting must have been valued as a novel family portrait and remained, rarely exhibited, with Frith’s descendants until acquired by the Museum. In the public sphere The Fair Toxophilites has become one of the most famous images of affluent Victorian leisure.
The Mock Election Benjamin Robert Haydon (1827) by Robert HaydonRoyal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery
The inspiration for the subject came from the artist’s stay in the King’s Bench Prison for Debt in 1827. Prisoners had enacted a ‘masquerade election’ which Haydon had watched from his cell.
Liliaceae, lilies (1900) by William Keble MartinRoyal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery
The Reverend William Keble Martin spent many years of his life collecting, studying and drawing plants. This drawing of plants in the lily family is a preliminary plate for inclusion in his book The Concise British Flora in Colour published in 1965. It corresponds to plates 85 and 86 in the final work. The following species are depicted: Muscari atlanticum, Scilla autumnalis, Scilla verna, Endymion non-scriptus, Fritillaria meleagris Gagea lutea, Lloydia serotina, Paris quadrifolia, Narthecium ossifragum, and Colchicum autumnale. RAMM also has his herbarium collection (pressed plants).
Orchidaceae, orchids (1900) by William Keble MartinRoyal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery
The Reverend William Keble Martin spent many years of his life collecting, studying and drawing plants. This drawing of plants in the orchid family is a preliminary plate for inclusion in his book The Concise British Flora in Colour published in 1965. It corresponds to plate 81 in the final work. The following species are depicted: Orchis purpurea, Orchis laxiflora, Anacamptis pyramidalis, Dactylorhiza incarnata, Dactylorhiza praetermissa, Epipactis palustris, Orchis militaris, Orchis simia, Orchis morio, Orchis mascula, Himantoglossum hircinum, Dactylorhiza purpurella, Dactylorhiza ericetorum, and Dactylorhiza fuchsii. RAMM also has his herbarium collection (pressed plants).
The Song of the Shirt (1874) by Frank HollRoyal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery
Frank Holl’s Song of the Shirt c.1874 reflects the bleaker side of life. Holl focused upon the hardships of the poor in Victorian England and the title is taken from a poem by Thomas Hood, which relates the plight of a needle woman employed on pitiful wages.
Victoria station, Troops leaving for the front (1917/1918) by Walter bayes (attributed to)Royal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery
As the main London rail link to the east coast channel ports, Victoria station was vital for troop movements during the First World War. Walter Bayes was a member of the Camden Town group. In 1917 he was recruited by the War Propaganda Bureau to paint pictures of the home front. Another work from this era, The Underworld, of the Elephant and Castle underground station, is at the Imperial War Museum.
Don Quixote-attacking the barber to capture the basin (1765/1770) by Francis HaymanRoyal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery
Andromeda-Perseus coming to her rescue (1840) by William EttyRoyal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery
This painting shows Perseus appearing in the background on a white horse, possibly Pegasus. The sea monster is at Andromeda’s feet ready to attack her. A later version of this painting is in the City Art Gallery, Manchester.
A Bit of Blue (1877) by Henry Stacy MarksRoyal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery
The subject is depicted holding a K’ang Hsi (1662-1722) porcelain ginger jar with similar porcelain in the background; these wares were seriously collected in the 1870s & 1880s.
Diadumene (1883) by Edward John PoynterRoyal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery
Diadumenè is an example of the classical subject matter that Poynter was known for. The figure is said to be that of the Venus Esquilina, excavated in Rome in 1874. Although the statue has missing arms, Poynter included them in his painting Diadumenè to show how they might have looked.
Landscape with Angelica and Medaro (1720/1730) by John WootonRoyal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery
Like Richard Wilson, Wootton visited Rome where he developed an Italianate landscape style. He was also a painter of horses and country sports. The subject is from Ariosto’s poem, Orlando Furioso (1516), which tells of the conflict between Christians and Saracens at the time of Charlemagne.
Panshanger Park (1909) by Spencer Frederick GoreRoyal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery
Buckfastleigh Abbey, Devonshire (1826) by J M W TurnerRoyal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery
Eric Shanes has discovered that this watercolour is based on a pencil drawing on p57 of the “Devonshire Rivers no 3 and Wharfedale” sketchbook in the Turner Bequest at the British Museum (No CXXXIV), in use from 1812-1815 according to Finberg.
Llyn Peris and Dolbadarn Castle (1762/1765) by Richard WilsonRoyal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery
Wilson, a native of Wales, studied the works of Claude and Poussin and lived in Rome for several years. He became one of the most successful landscape painters of the 1700s. His paintings combined accurate topography with a fashionable Italianate style.
Dingle’s Department Store, Exeter (1949) by Cyril Arthur Farey and John J AdamsRoyal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery
This drawing was purchased a few weeks before the re-development plan for the Princesshay area of Exeter was approved. It is significant in being a good visual record of a definitive time and architectural style. With this drawing also came a photograph of the same subject. Cyril Arthur Farey was a well recognised Architect and watercolour painter.
The City Bank of England No 2 (1931) by William WalcotRoyal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery
After the Storm (1861) by Samuel PalmerRoyal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery
The Quay, Exeter (1936/1944) by John PiperRoyal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery
The Quay, Exeter uses watercolour and collage to depict some of the building in this part of Exeter. Prominent in the picture is the Custom House, the oldest extant such building in the country, and a place that was at the centre of Exeter’s woollen cloth export trade in the 17th and 18th centuries. The image was published as the central image in an article entitled ‘Warmth in the West’ for Architectural Review, vol 96, 1944, but it is possible that the work was made on an earlier trip to Devon.
The Meeting of Sir Henry Lee and King Charles II (1826) by Francis Philip StephanoffRoyal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery
Historical subjects were one of this artist’s specialities although he was also an illustrator, architectural draughtsman, and accomplished violinist.
Costumes for the Mikado (1926) by Charles RickettsRoyal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery
In 1926 Rupert D’Oyly Carte and Co had “The Mikado” redesigned by Charles Ricketts who based his costumes on Japanese fashion of c1720.
The Port of London (1900) by Charles William WyllieRoyal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery
After the Rain, Widecombe (1994) by Alan RichardsRoyal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery
Confusion over title as inscribed in pencil on reverse: Above Widecombe, Dartmoor. His art mainly consists of landscape pieces and still-life images of both natural and artificial subject matter.
Orange and White (1962) by William ScottRoyal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery
In the 1950s, Scott was known as a pioneer of abstraction in Britain. He tended to follow the trends of the popular American Abstractionists and Pop Art icons, opening himself up to critique in a British society not yet ready for his innovative style of painting. On of his favourite colours to work with was orange, which he proudly showcased in groups.
Two Vermilions, Green and Purple in Red (1965-03) by Patrick HeronRoyal Albert Memorial Museum & Art Gallery
Even when he eliminated recognisable subject matter, Heron’s abstractions stem from his observations of the visual world. Every shape is recognisable in land, sea, or sky, and all colours are natural, in some sense of the word. Hard as he may resist, a piece such as this could be considered a landscape with the right frame of mind.