John Robert Cozens (British, London 1752–1797 London)
September 1782 or later
Watercolor over faint traces of graphite, on cream wove paper
Sheet: 14 7/16 x 20 7/8 in. (36.7 x 53 cm)
Rogers Fund, 1907
Not on view
In May, 1782, Cozens left England for the continent, employed by William Beckford as draughtsman. The party arrived in Italy via the Tyrol and reached Naples by July. On September 18th, the artist and his patron parted and Cozens moved south to Salerno. A number of views along the Gulf of Salerno occur in his sketchbooks from the journey. A pencil outline drawing inscribed "On the Gulf of Salerno -- near Vietri -- Sept. 27" on page 15 of the third "Beckford" sketchbook, now in the collection of the Duke of Hamilton, provides the skeleton of this watercolor, which was probably made several years later in England. Other watercolors of the same stretch of coast are preserved at the Whitworth Art Gallery, Manchester, the Cecil Higgins Art Gallery, Bedford and the Victoria and Albert Museum, London.
Italian Lake Scene
Marking: Stamped in black ink, at lower right of mount, the collector's mark of John Percy (Lugt 1504).
Dr. John Percy (British, 1817–1879), sold at the following; [Christie, Manson & Woods] Christie's, London, April 15, 1890, no. 290; Sir John Charles Robinson (British, 1824–1913), sold at the following; [Christie, Manson & Woods] Christie's, London, April 21, 1902, possibly no. 90 (by A. Cozens)(called "Cozens, A Mouintainous Landscape with Building"); Vendor: Shepherd Brothers (London), through Roger Eliot Fry
Christie, Manson & Woods Catalogue of the Very Extensive and Valuable Collection of Water-colour Drawings of Dr. John Percy, F.R.S., deceased, late of Gloucester Crescent, Hyde-Park, comprising upwards of fifteen hundred drawings by nearly seven hundred painters... First day's sale. April 15, 1890, lot 290, p. 15 (J. Cozens, "Bay of Salerno"; bought for £5.10 with lot 289, J. Cozens, "Hamilton's Villa, Portici").
Christie, Manson & Woods A Catalogue of Drawings of the English School, in Watercolour, Sepia, Charcoal, Pen-and-ink, and Pencil, the Property of Sir. J. C. [John Charles] Robinson, C. B., F.S.A., who has given up his London residence. Which will be sold by Mssrs. Christie, Manson & Woods, at their Great Rooms, 8 King Street, St. James's Square on Monday. April 21, 1902, possibly lot 90, p. 9 (Alexander Cozens, "A Mountainous Landscape with Buildings").
Roger Eliot Fry "Drawings." in The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, vol. 2, no. 12, December 1907, p. 201, ill.
Charles Francis Bell, Thomas Girtin "The Drawings and Sketches of John Robert Cozens" in The Walpole Society. vol. 23, 1934–1935, A related watercolor of the same stretch of coast, at the Whitworth Art Gallery, Manchester (listed but not reproduced), called "On the Gulf of Salerno, near Vietri" and dated Sept. 27, 1782., cat. no. 274, p. 60.
A. Hyatt Mayor "A Modern Artist of the Eighteenth Century" The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin. n.s. vol. 12, no. 4, December 1953, p. 101, ill.
Felice Stampfle Landscape Drawings and Water-colors, Bruegel to Cézanne. Exh. cat., The Morgan Library & Museum, New York (January 31 - April 11, 1953). Morgan Library & Museum, New York, 1953, cat. no. 87, p. 29.
Jacob Bean 100 European Drawings in the Metropolitan Museum of Art. New York Graphic Society, New York, 1964, cat. no. 99, ill.
"Drawings from the Roger Fry Purchase." Apollo. Apollo Magazine, vol. 82, London, September 1965, fig. no. 6, p. 248.
Janet S. Byrne, Linda Boyer Gillies English Landscape Artists. Ex. brochure, Metropolitan Museum of Art, June 26-September 6. New York, 1971, cat. no. 6, p. 2.