Although he said the large coastal port in Lincolnshire was a “treeless and smelly town of a meaty red colour”, he also described it as a place where he captured “wonderful material for lithographs”.
This work of a view from a boat, above, is thought to date from his Grimsby trip in 1940. Previously unidentified, the small 9 x 7in (24 x 17cm) pencil on paper was offered with an attribution to Ravilious in a Modern & Contemporary British Art sale at London saleroom Roseberys (25% buyer’s premium) on June 11.
The drawing exceeded hopes of £1000-2000 to sell for £3000.
Helena Anderson, associate picture specialist at Roseberys, said the department consulted with James Russell, the author of the forthcoming catalogue raisonné of Ravilious’ drawings and watercolours, “who agreed with the attribution to Ravilious”.
The drawing is thought to be a study for a watercolour or lithograph that was never produced and has squares ready for transfer. Ravilious died two years later when the aircraft he was in was lost off Iceland in 1942.
Drawn to warmth
The sale in West Norwood was led by a James Dickson Innes (1887-1914) painting with provenance to the prominent collection of London solicitor Wilfrid Evill and his ward Honor Frost, much of which was sold in a landmark multi-million-pound auction at Sotheby’s in 2011.
The signed 10 x 14in (26 x 35cm) oil on panel was sold by Frost several decades before the 2011 sale and came with labels on the verso for the venerable London galleries Agnew’s and the Redfern Gallery, and another for an exhibition at the Brighton Art Gallery held in 1965.
Innes – who is best known for the expressive paintings of Welsh mountains and remote landscapes produced during his short life – was drawn to Collioure for its warm climate and situation on the Mediterranean coast of France near the Spanish border.
He was enamoured by its vibrant colours and light, painting the picturesque harbour several times between 1908-13. Innes died from tuberculosis a year later in 1914 at the age of 27.
Estimated at £10,000-15,000, this painting topped the sale with a bid of £16,000.