William WOOLLETT after George STUBBS (1724-1802)
The Spanish Pointer. Engraved after an Original Picture of Mr. George
Stubbs, in the Possession of Mr. Bradford.
Etching (progress proof before engraving), probably 1767. Fagan's state i/iv,
Lennox-Boyd's i/vi, before all lettering, on Dupuy Fin Auvergne with a Grand
Eagle watermark (see Heawood Watermarks, Mainly of the 17th and 18th Centuries
(1950), 1317). Image 15-1/8 x 20-3/4 in. (385 x 525 mm); sheet 16-15/16 x
21-7/8 in. Trimmed just within the plate mark, else in excellent condition.
In an old ebonized frame (21 x 31 inches, resized) in the Dutch taste with
polished walnut molding panel.
First-state progress proof of George Stubbs's famous sporting picture, "The
Spanish Pointer." The print was published in the third state by T. Bradford,
No. 132, Fleet Street, January 1, 1768. Fagan (1885) cites this first-state
impression (see note on Provenance below). Lennox-Boyd (1989) lists one impression
in the British Museum and one in the Yale Center for British Art.
In 1767 Stubbs and the internationally famed Woollett enjoyed a personal association.
Both were elected directors, and later officers, of the Society of Artists
(from which the Royal Academy shortly split off). Also, Stubbs kept a portrait
of Woollett in his studio and painted Woollett's dog Sancho. At the very beginning
of his own history as an etcher and engraver (see Lennox-Boyd, no. 1), Stubbs
may plausibly have played a collaborative role in this first of Woollett's
five large engravings after Stubbs.
References: Lennox-Boyd, George Stubbs, The Complete Engraved Works
10, i/vi (1989, citing 17 other references); Fagan, A Catalogue Raisonné
of the Engraved Works of William Woollett
LIX i/iv (1885).
Provenance: A penciled notation "Dr. Ginsburg" (the collector C[hristian]
D[avid] Ginsburg, LL.D., Chertsey) on the verso may indentify this impression
as the one listed by Fagan (who invariably cited only one example of each
state, and the one in the British Museum Print Room if there was one).
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