St. Paul's Cathedral from St. Martin's-le-Grand

Thomas Girtin (British, London 1775–1802 London)

ca. 1795
Watercolor, pen, black ink over graphite
sheet: 19 3/16 x 14 7/8 in. (48.8 x 37.8 cm)
Credit Line:
Purchase, Sir Edwin Manton Gift, 2002
Accession Number:
  • Description

    Thomas Girtin, who ranks among the finest European landscape painters of the Romantic era, and the most accomplished British watercolorists of any period, painted this watercolor when he was about twenty, working directly from the view that lay outside his mother's front door. By combining vibrant details with loose passages of generalized brushwork, Girtin captures the bustle of an eighteenth-century London street.

  • Signatures, Inscriptions, and Markings

    Inscription: Inscribed "Elerton" (or "Elekton") on shop sign at middle right

  • Provenance

    William Dorrell, in 1877; Sir Walter Prideaux ; Walter T. Prideaux ; Southampton Art Gallery, until 1997; Thomas Agnew & Sons, Ltd. (London), in 1997; Private Collection, United States ; Vendor: Thomas Agnew & Sons, Ltd. (London)

  • Exhibition History

    The Metropolitan Museum of Art. "Drawings and Prints: Selections from the Permanent Collection," January 27, 2003–April 28, 2003.

  • Catalogue Raisonné

    Thomas Girtin and David Loshak, The Art of Thomas Girtin (London: A. and C. Black, 1954), cat. no. 118 (ii), 149-150.

  • References

    Thomas Agnew & Sons, Ltd. English Watercolours, Drawings and Small Oil Paintings: Agnew's 128th Annual Exhibition, Presented by Andrew Wyld.. 1st-30th March, 2001, cat. no. 34, ill.

    Exhibition of Works by Thomas Girtin. Burlington Fine Arts Club, London, 1875, cat. no. 133.

    Winter Exhibition of Drawings by the Old Masters and Water-Colour Drawings by Deceased Artists of the British School. Exh. cat. Grosvenor Galleries, London, 1877-1878, cat. no. 320.

    Catalogue of a Collection of Early Drawings and Pictures of London. Burlington Fine Arts Club, London, 1919, cat. no. 111.

    Thomas Agnew & Sons, Ltd. Loan Exhibition of Water-Colour Drawings by Thomas Girtin. London, 1953, cat. no. 41, ill.

    Thomas Girtin, David Loshak The Art of Thomas Girtin. London, 1954, cat. no. 118 (ii), pp. 149-150.

    Greg Smith , et al. Thomas Girtin: The Art of Watercolor. Ex. cat. Tate Britain, London, 2002, cat. no. 75, 101.

    Carmen C. Bambach, Elizabeth Barker, Colta Ives, Nadine Orenstein, Michiel C. Plomp, Perrin Stein "Recent Acquisitions, A Selection: 2002-2003." in The Metropolitan Museum of Art Bulletin. The Metropolitan Museum of Art, vol. 61, no. 2, Autumn 2003, p. 27, ill.

  • See also
    In the Museum
    Heilbrunn Timeline of Art History