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Montague Dawson (1890 - 1973)

Lot 125: Montague J. DAWSON (1895-1973) Oil on Canvas

A.B.Levy’s Palm Beach

August 29, 2019
West Palm Beach , FL, US

More About this Item


Montague Dawson R.S.M.A., F.R.S.A.
"The Abraham Rydberg"
signed MONTAGUE DAWSON (lower left)
oil on canvas
34" Wide, 39" High with frame
86.3 by 99 cm
A letter from M. Newman, Ltd.(dated February 4,1950), discussing this painting will accompany this work.
M. Newman, Ltd., St. James, London, c.1949
Hugh Jaques, Esq., Montreal, Canada, c.1950
By DescentRehs Galleries, Inc., New York City
Private Collection, Palm Beach
Montague Dawson had an affinity for clipper ships, the sailing vessels that catapulted the trading world into the modern era. Between 1840 and 1890, these tall, elegant ships, twice as fast as any sailing ships built, travelled the globe, bringing a wide array of exotic goods from tea to antiques, spices to prints and manuscripts, to eager consumers in America and Europe. These large ships would compete against each other in “tea races" -- pitting the most advanced ships, built for speed as well as maximum capacity, with the best captains and crews. A speedy trip home from the Far East granted bragging rights to the crew and would enable the owners of the ship to command higher freight fees, resulting in huge sums of money. Tea merchants would offer incentives for fast passages as well, adding a premium of £1 per ton of tea to the first ship to dock. The outcomes of these yearly races were intensely followed by the public, reported in the columns of newspapers throughout the United Kingdom, and many bets were placed on the outcome in London and throughout the ports of Britain (Ron Ranson, The Maritime Paintings of Montague Dawson, Devon, 1993).

Condition Report

This work is in perfect condition. It has probably never been cleaned or varnished. There does not appear to be any instability or damage to the paint layer. It is very slightly dirty in some of the impasto in the water. In the upper right, there are a few little marks in the cloud that were made while the paint was still wet, and therefore presumably when the work was in the artist's studio. The painting should be hung in its current state.

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