Enfilade

Portrait of General Wolfe Tops $600,000 at Bonhams

Posted in Art Market by Editor on July 20, 2010

As reported at Art Daily:

Circle of Joseph Highmore (?), "Portrait of General James Wolfe" Photo: Bonhams

Bonhams Old Master Paintings auction (7 July 2010) made £3,403,920 with a packed saleroom and numerous telephone bidders. The highlight was the sale of the last privately owned portrait of General James Wolfe – the soldier from Kent who conquered Canada – which sold to a Canadian buyer for £400,800.

Wolfe led the British assault on Quebec in 1759, with the resulting Battle of the Plains of Abraham (or the Battle of Quebec) being one of the most celebrated events in British military history and a pivotal victory in the Seven Years’ War. He was mortally wounded during the battle and died on the field; yet his victory earned him posthumous fame and it proved to be a deciding moment in the conflict between France and Britain. The portrait is attributed to the Circle of Joseph Highmore.

The top selling lot of the day was ‘A still life of tulips, a crown imperial, snowdrops, lilies, irises, roses and other flowers in a glass vase with a lizard, butterflies, a dragonfly and other insects’. Painted on copper by Jan van Kessel the Elder, it sold for £804,000. . . .

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