The first of two fine art auctions taking place on 3 April includes a good group of works in the category of Sporting Art (lots 1-74), which is then followed by Old Master Paintings and 18th & 19th century pictures (lots 75-190).
The Collection of Peter Walwyn MBE (1933-2017)
Amongst the works on offer is a small but comprehensive collection (lots 33-41) of sporting pictures belonging to internationally acclaimed racehorse trainer, the late Peter Walwyn MBE (1933-2017).
His most notable successes came in the 1970s, winning the British flat racing Champion Trainer title in both 1974 and 1975. Walwyn trained over 1,500 winners from Seven Barrows and Windsor House Stables in Lambourn, Berkshire, including Grundy, who in 1975, won The Derby, the Irish Derby and King George VI and Queen Elizabeth Stakes. He was integral in forming the Lambourn Trainers Association and the Lambourn Valley Housing Trust. In retirement he continued to promote the Valley of the Racehorse and was awarded an MBE in 2012 for his contributions to horseracing and the community.
Peter Walwyn, pictured in 1976 | CREDIT: Rex/Shutterstock
John Frederick Herring Senior
Highlights from the Sporting Art group include three works by John Frederick Herring Senior.
These depict the racehorses Beeswing trained by Bob Johnson who won The Ascot Gold Cup in 1847 (lot 34), Cotherstone, the winner of The Derby and 2,000 Guineas in 1843 (lot 35), and Miss Letty, a bay filly bred by The Hon. Thomas Orde of Bolton Castle, Yorkshire, which won The Oaks at Epsom in 1837 (lot 36).
John Frederick Herring Senior (British 1795-1865), 'Miss Letty', oil on canvas; est. £5,000-7,000 (+fees)
There is also a more recent work depicting Polygamy (lot 37) by the renowned sporting artist Roy Miller. Roy Miller has received numerous worldwide commissions from owners, trainers, breeders, jockeys, racing authorities and even the Royal Family including HRH Prince Philip and HRH Prince Charles.
Also in this Sporting Art section, from a private collection, are three further works by Miller including the impressive Time to Spare (lot 66). Time to Spare reflects an incident at Lingfield Park when the runners were early going to the start. The painting was painted for the jockey Frankie Durr who is seen in red at the centre of the composition. On the grey in brown and yellow checks is Lester Piggott.
Roy Miller (American b. 1938), 'Time to Spare', oil on canvas; est. £3,000-5,000 (+fees)
Impressive period portraits
Moving on to the second half of the sale, there is a number of impressive period portraits. Lot 104, an oil on canvas, English School (18th century), Portrait of the young Thomas Tyndall (1764-1804) training his spaniel, est. £1,000-2,000 (+fees), is also from the Peter Walwyn collection.
Two further highlights include a work attributed to Studio of Sir Peter Lely (British 1618-1680), the Portrait of Princess Henrietta Anne Stuart, Duchesse d’Orleans (lot 78), and a charming Portrait of Mariane Gage (lot 130) by Stephen Catterson Smith the Elder (British 1806-1872).
The sitter in this second work was the only daughter and heiress of Conolly Gage, of Bellarena House, Magilligan, Co. Londonderry. She married Sir Frederick William Heygate, 2nd Bt., Member of Parliament for Co. Londonderry (1859-74) in 1851. The background of this picture is a topographically accurate representation of the landscape around Bellarena House.
Stephen Catterson Smith the Elder (British 1806-1872), 'Portrait of Marianne Gage, seated on a red cloak', oil on canvas, est. £12,000-15,000 (+fees)
William Henry Millais
Landscapes also feature in the sale, with attention being drawn to a set of six watercolour views (lots 136 – 141) including two local compositions of Frensham (lot 136) and River Wey, Millbridge (lot 138) by the artist William Henry Millais, the older brother of the famous Pre-Raphaelite artist John Everett Millais.
His artistic output reflected his passion for engraving and watercolours. In particular he focused on depicting landscapes in watercolour, capturing the light and detail in nature which he heightened with white.
William Henry Millais (British 1828-1899), 'River Wey, Millbridge', watercolour heightened with white; est. £800-1,200 (+fees)
Finally, at the end of the auction there are two striking watercolour and pencil works by the Italian artist Fortunino Matania, who despite being best known as a war artist during World War I, presents a more sensual and feminine offering with At the baths (lot 189) and The puppeteer (lot 190).
Browse the full catalogue
Auction: Wednesday 3 April, 10.30am
On view: Sunday 31 March, 10am–2pm | Monday 1 April, 9am–5.30pm | Tuesday 2 April, 9am–4.30pm | Day of sale, from 8.30am
Fortunino Matania (Italian 1881-1963), 'At the baths', watercolour and pencil; est. £700-900 (+fees)