Clyde Shipping, Wet Moonlit night 1883

by John Atkinson Grimshaw

P.O.A.

With darkness falling, Clyde Shipping, Wet Moonlit Night depicts the moonlit docks in Scotland that had a booming shipbuilding industry at the end of the nineteenth century. This highly atmospheric harbour scene is characteristic of Grimshaw during his artistic peak, with his moonlit urban scenes being so evocative of Victorian life of the late nineteenth century.

DIMENSIONS: (unframed)19.5 x 29.5 inches
SIGNATURE: Signed lower left & dated 1883
Inscribed with title and dated on reverse
MEDIUM:Oil on canvas

Catalogue No: 5854 Categories: ,

The title of this piece references Clyde Shipping, one of the earliest shipping companies to provide steamship services. This is emphasised by the haze of steam drifting across the scene from the harbour to the street. As with much of Grimshaw’s work, steam was a symbol of modern life.

The composition is dotted with isolated anonymous figures. The silhouettes of horse drawn carriages fade into the background, suggesting the rise of steam technology and modernization. The sole figure to the right of the composition in the foreground is holding an umbrella, which pierces the bright yellow light from the houses. Grimshaw asserts both steam and electric light as symbols of modernity.

Notably, in this scene Grimshaw has been influenced by photography which was a new technique at the time the artist was painting. Grimshaw drew from the perspective achieved from photographs and used this to achieve his perfect sense of proportion on his canvases.

Purchased directly from the artist;
Private collection Canada and thence by family descent;
Private Collection, United Kingdom

Buy with confidence: our assurance to you

Professional Associations

We have built up a strong reputation for the quality of the paintings, drawings and sculpture that we curate, exhibit and sell. Our professional associations with bodies such as The British Antique Dealers’ Association (BADA) and the Association of Art & Antique Dealers (LAPADA) are as a result of our reputation for integrity, our wide knowledge of fine arts and the high quality of our stock. Our business standards and expertise are reviewed regularly to adhere vigorously with enforced Codes. Our memberships and commitment to its Code of Conducts, gives our buyers confidence when purchasing a work from us.

Authenticity

Condition reports and certificates of authenticity vary in their nature by artwork, for more information on your pieces of interest, please enquire with the gallery.

Artwork images

We take pride in the attention we give to our images of the artworks for purchase and invest in these to ensure outputs are aligned as closely as possible to the item in reality. We do not apply filters or modify images, we provide high quality images to reflect the high quality of our artworks.

Your purchase process

Payment processing – You can be assured that payments are securely processed through Worldpay’s trusted payment gateway.

The Trinity House promise to you

Shipping and packaging

Shipping and packaging requirements are assessed per piece to ensure the most suitable protection for the artwork. Trinity House will therefore call following purchase to agree the recommendations and costs.

Our After Sales services

We offer the following services which we will be happy to discuss with you following your purchase, alternatively you can enquire for more information.

Insurance

We offer insurance appraisals to protect your prised artwork and help you find the right cover and policy for you.

Framing

We are able to advise on framing and have access to every type and style to suit any artistic period or room setting.

Conservation

The nature of the materials involved in a painting mean that on occasion some pieces are susceptible to movement and the effects of natural ageing. We are able to provide advice on practical measures to conserve the original condition of a piece and have relationships with restorers and framers to offer you a range of services to meet your needs.

The composition is dotted with isolated anonymous figures. The silhouettes of horse drawn carriages fade into the background, suggesting the rise of steam technology and modernization. The sole figure to the right of the composition in the foreground is holding an umbrella, which pierces the bright yellow light from the houses. Grimshaw asserts both steam and electric light as symbols of modernity.

Notably, in this scene Grimshaw has been influenced by photography which was a new technique at the time the artist was painting. Grimshaw drew from the perspective achieved from photographs and used this to achieve his perfect sense of proportion on his canvases.

Born in Leeds, the son of an ex-policeman, Grimshaw first took up painting while he was employed as a clerk for the Great Northern Railway. He married his cousin Frances Theodosia Hubbarde in 1858. By 1861, he had abandoned his job in order to devote all his time to becoming an artist. In his early work, John Atkinson Grimshaw was influenced by John Ruskin’s creed of ‘truth to nature’ and adopted the detailed Pre-Raphaelite technique of the Leeds painter, John William Inchbold. Grimshaw was also fascinated by the relatively new art of photography and may have used a camera obscura in developing his compositions. Towards 1865, he renounced this painting style. Grimshaw painted many urban scenes in which moonlight and shadows were the most striking features. The towns and docks that he painted most frequently were Glasgow, Liverpool, Leeds, Scarborough, Whitby and London. These works have become Grimshaw’s best known though he also painted landscapes, portraits, interior scenes, fairy pictures and neoclassical subjects. Grimshaw painted mostly for private patrons. He only exhibited five works at the Royal Academy between 1874 and 1876.

By 1870, Grimshaw had become successful enough to move to Knostrop Old Hall, a seventeenth Century mansion about two miles from the centre of Leeds, which featured in many of his paintings. He rented another home near Scarborough which he called ‘The Castle by the Sea’, towards 1876. Grimshaw suffered a serious financial disaster in 1879 and had to leave his house at Scarborough. He moved to London and rented a studio in Chelsea, leaving his family at Knostrop. He returned to Knostrop, where he died in 1893.

Grimshaw painted mostly for private patrons. He only exhibited five works at the Royal Academy between 1874 and 1876.

Your Message


You may also like…