Friday 23 August 2019

Handel a pastel by Thomas Hudson and an Anonymous oil portrait at the Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance

Portrait of George Friederic Handel

Thomas Hudson (1701 - 1779).

1701 Devonshire - 1779 Twickenham.

Sold Hampel Fine Art Auctions Munich Lot 282, 7April 2016

Pastel on paper.

39.7 x 32.8 cm.

Inscribed, dated and signed “Hudson. f. this one Day of June 1743/ George Friederic Handel” in brown ink along the lower edge.

Framed with glass in gilt frame topped with rocaille ornament.

Accompanied by a detailed report listing comparable examples and relevant bibliographical references.

Auction Hotel Drouot, Paris, 12 September 1920, lot 196.
Belgian private collection.

John Kerslake, Early Georgian Portraits, volume I, London 1977, p. 124.

I am very grateful to Julia Semmer of the Handel House Museum for alerting me to this very important dated image of the composer.



Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music and Dance

From the website of Art UK.

Described there as:

c. 1730.

Three-Quarter-Length Portrait of a Seated Gentleman Wearing a Wig and Brown Coat

Thomas Hudson (1701–1779) (circle of).

To my eye a more than competent portrait of Handel perhaps a little earlier than the pastel by Hudson above.

No provenance
oil on canvas

H 145 x W 127 cm

The portrait on the staircase at the Trinity Laban Conseratoire in Greenwich.

The frame appears to be later than the portrait with applied musical motifs in composition 
perhaps late 18th Century

Once again I am very grateful to Julia Semmer.


Thomas Hudson

Handel was portrayed in 1749 and 1756 by Thomas Hudson. The older of the two pictures was discovered in 1869 by the Hamburg Handel researcher Friedrich Chrysander in the home of Handel's descendants, in Calbe on the Saale and acquired by Chrysander. 

He left the painting to the Hamburg merchant Friedrich G├╝ltzow with the condition that it be transferred after his death to the Hamburg City Library, which happened in 1883.

Monday 19 August 2019

The English 18th Century Chimneypiece.

The English 18th Century Chimneypiece.

I have recently started a parallel blog on a parallel subject - the design and manufacture of the English Chimney piece in the 18th century.

It is a subject that I have been interested in for a very long time - I ran one of the earliest of the new wave of architectural salvage and architectural antiques business in England in Bath from April 1982 until April 1985.

Given that most sculptors of the period also made architectural sculpture it seems a logical thing to add further knowledge to the subject of 17th and 18th century English (and Irish and Scottish) sculpture.

I have also set up another blog in order to post on Church Monuments of the 17th and 18th centuries.
I have, in the past dwelt on the portrait bust in secular situations, but this I believe was rather short sighted given the huge amount of excellent sculpture, particularly portrait sculpture to be found in sometimes long neglected English Churches.

It would be very gratifying to have a few followers on these blogs 

The first few entries in the Chimney Piece blog are on the Chimneypiece in 18th century pattern books.

The images below are from Thomas Malton's  A Treatise on Perspective of 1777.

I have included plate XXXV here because it illustrates a bust mounted in the pediment on a pipe organ.