Bonhams to sell ‘The Curragh’ by Paul Henry in London

The Curragh by Paul Henry for sale at Bonhams

The Curragh by Paul Henry for sale at Bonhams


A Paul Henry painting, The Curragh, is to be auctioned by Bonhams in a British and Irish art sale in London next month.

Despite the spelling, it is not a depiction of the Co Kildare racecourse. The 100-year-old oil shows two men in a traditional fishing boat, usually spelled currach, off the coast of Achill, Co Mayo. The spelling “curragh” is also acceptable and occasionally used and, said the auctioneers, is the official title of the painting in the catalogue raisonée (definitive list) of the artist’s paintings.

The painting, which is on the market for the first time in 60 years, comes from the collection of an Irish family and is estimated to sell for £100,000-£150,000 (€117,313-€176,100) on November 20th.

According to Penny Day, head of Irish art at Bonhams, “What’s exciting about The Curragh is that it presents a rare and charged seascape by an artist who’s better known for his calm, rural landscapes. The scene is rendered with spontaneous strokes that show Henry at his best and compel the viewer to urge the men forward”.

The Curragh and other Irish paintings in the London sale, including pictures by Jack B Yeats and Gerard Dillon, will go on view in Dublin at Bonhams Ireland premises in Molesworth Street for three days starting on Sunday, November 3rd.

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