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Hogarth

February 6, 2011 Leave a comment

Watercolour painting by Paul HogarthThat’s Paul Hogarth, the twentieth century watercolourist and illustrator, not William Hogarth, the eighteenth century painter and engraver.

I’ve mentioned before that I was drawn to the works of Graham Greene by a series of his books with Hogarth illustrations on the cover. A few years after enjoying those books and covers I came across a great coffee table book of Hogarth’s paintings he’d done on some journey round Europe and the Mediterranean. I love how he captures vivid colours and light. Not usually what you’d expect from paintings done in watercolour. And I liked the people he dropped into his places.

Anyway, my wife got me the painting above for my birthday and it now has pride of place in our hall. Despite my rubbish photograph, you can see that water has crept onto the paper from the bottom and carried some of the paint as it seeped upwards. I’m not sure if that made it affordable, or if my wife went hugely extravagant for that particular birthday.

The painting arrived with a note from the dealer saying that the picture had been used as the frontispiece for a French edition of Conan Doyle’s Sherlock Holmes short stories titled ‘La Main Brune’ – ‘The Brown Hand’. So, naturally, I tracked this on Ebay and was absolutely delighted to eventually buy the book from a dealer in Montparnasse for a very reasonable price.

La Main Brune with Hogarth picture on coverWhen the book arrived from France I was thrilled to see that the reproduction of the painting was made after the water damage had taken place. ¬†Odd though that the publishers removed Hogarth’s signature from the painting.

Categories: art, books