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On Hounslow Heath
Collection of Richard L. Feigen
Richard Wilson (1713/14-1782)
On Hounslow Heath
c.1765 (undated)
Oil on canvas
[37 x 46.2 cm]
14 1/2 x 18 3/16 in.
P131B
An extensive landscape with a market woman in a red dress seated on a bank in the left foreground, her back to the viewer and a basket by her side. Beyond is a river, on the near bank of which two donkeys are grazing. Upstream are a weir and a thickly-wooded island.
RA Old Masters Exhibition, 1894 (42); Agnew 1926 (20); London 1934 (218 - View on the Thames); New York 2010 (12)
Apparently acquired from the artist in 1765 by the London journalist and political writer Thomas Green (1722-94) [...] Albert Levy, sold 1876; Col. W.L. Grant; Christie's 18 June 1881 (91), bt Butler; Charles Butler; Christie's 26 May 1911 (155) bt Agnew; H. Pritchard Gordon, Esq.; Christie's 1 May 1925 (113), bt Agnew; C. Nicholls & Sons, 1928; Sir George Agnew, Bart, Rougham Hall, Bury St Edmunds; Private collection, France; Sotheby's London, 16 July 1986 (73); bt Richard L. Feigen, New York City
Signed lower left: RW [monogram, the R reversed]
The view shows part of the watermeadows beside the River Crane near Whitton Place, an estate on Hounslow Heath acquired in 1765 by Wilson's friend, the architect Sir William Chambers.
D360 A View of On Hounslow Heath, Private Collection, UK, c/o Lowell Libson Ltd
E72/1 Thomas Hastings after Richard Wilson:
E72/1 The British Museum
E72/1A The British Museum
E72/1B Yale Center for British Art, Paul Mellon Collection
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The site is undistinguished, not more than a piece of common nature, and treated in the unpretentious manner of 17th century Dutch art. The attraction lies in the beauty of the sky and the reflections in the water and bears witness to an increasing naturalism which came to characterise Wilson's later British views, both in terms of subject matter and also in the manner of describing detail and the outdoor phenomena of light and enveloping atmosphere.
Commemorative Catalogue 1934 (99); WGC, p. 178, pl. 37b (version 3); Hayes 1964, pp. 338-39, fig. 37; Hayes 1967, p. 258
In his introduction to Etchings from the Works of Ric. Wilson, with some Memoirs of his Life &c., Hastings says 'Paul Sandby was with Richard Wilson at the time the Sketch was made for the subject of Honslow Heath' (p.9). However it is unclear whether this refers to a drawing, an independent sketch in oil or the lay-in for the finished picture.
Cleaned 1986 by Alexander Dunluce, Chief Conservator of the Tate Gallery, when the monogram at the lower left was discovered.