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School of Sir Joshua Reynolds (British, 1723-1792) Portrait of a Gentleman, Described as "Mr. Wilkinson"

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American & European Works of Art - 3293B
Date / Time :
September 27, 2019 12:00PM


School of Sir Joshua Reynolds (British, 1723-1792)

Portrait of a Gentleman, Described as "Mr. Wilkinson"
Oil on canvas, 30 x 25 in. (76.0 x 63.0 cm), framed.
Condition: Lined, retouch, craquelure.

Provenance: Ex-collection of Sir Douglas Archibald Seton-Steuart, 5th Baronet (1857–1930), New Stirling, Scotland; through to Spin & Son, Ltd., London; to Chester Noyes Greenough, Belmont, Massachusetts; through to the current owner.

N.B. The lot is accompanied by a letter from Spink & Son, Ltd., London, from 1937, to the American buyer, C.N. Greenough, Esq., of Belmont, Massachusetts, which provides the name of the sitter and some provenance. The letter suggests that the portrait is "quite possibly by Reynolds." The American buyer, Chester Noyes Greenough (1874-1938), was a Professor of English and Dean at Harvard University. Also accompanying the lot is a printed photograph of the library at Greenough's home in Belmont showing the portrait hanging above the fireplace.

The sitter here is different from the portrait of Mr. Wilkinson (cat. no. 1881, done in 1771) included in the Reynolds catalogue raisonné by David Mannings. The work is closer in feeling to portraits done a decade later.
Estimate $1,000-1,500

Minor retouch to the face, mainly to reinforce the shadows on the left side and with a small area in his brow. A 5 1/2 inch line of retouch across the sitter's left shoulder, probably a restored tear. Scattered retouch to the background. The irregular surface of the corners shows evidence of there having been spandrels or that spandrels had been intended to create an oval format.

Framed dimensions are 37 1/4 x 32 x 2 1/2 inches.

Items may have wear and tear, imperfections, or the effects of aging. Any condition statement given, as a courtesy to a client, is only an opinion and should not be treated as a statement of fact. Skinner shall have no responsibility for any error or omission.