“He is a portal for rediscovering scenes of the forgotten 18th century,” says Mitchell, director of Mayfair gallery John Mitchell Fine Art. “He inadvertently documented the Industrial Revolution. Many of his landscape paintings include views of mills during a time of change for the country.”
After apprenticing as a ship painter in Hull, Ibbetson moved to London where he worked as a picture restorer. There he learned the styles and techniques of the Dutch landscape artists from the previous century who were highly popular at the time. His travels took him across England, into Wales and even on a year-long expedition to Indonesia.
His landscape watercolours are his most sought-after works and are in short supply. However, John Mitchell has gathered a few of them among the 15 works it will show (November 23-December 8) to mark the bicentenary of the artist’s death. Oils, prints and drawings will also be exhibited on loan and for sale.