Irish collector pays €1.7 million for Stubbs painting in London
James Hamilton, 2nd Earl of Clanbrassil (1730-1798), with his hunter Mowbray, resting on a wooded path by a stream by George Stubbs sold at Sotheby’s to an Irish buyer for €1.7 million
Christie’s said that a private Irish bidder was the buyer of an important painting by renowned English equestrian artist George Stubbs, which made £1.4 million (€1.7 million) at auction earlier this month. The anonymous buyer probably has an interest in horses; the painting is titled James Hamilton, 2nd Earl of Clanbrassil (1730-1798), with his hunter Mowbray, resting on a wooded path by a stream.
The painting, dated 1765, was described in pre-auction publicity as “a masterpiece from Stubbs’ early maturity which demonstrates his supreme skill at rendering the equine form, combined with his gifts as a portraitist and his dexterity as a landscape painter”.
Clanbrassil, after whom the street in Dublin is named, was an 18th-century aristocrat who served as sheriff for Co Louth and was a founder Knight of the Order of St Patrick, and a founder of the Royal Irish Academy. He was one of the first Irish patrons to recognise the painter’s talents and to commission a horse portrait from him.
George Stubbs (1724-1806) is best known for his paintings of horses. The record price for one of his paintings was achieved for Gimcrack on Newmarket Heath, with a Trainer, a Stable-Lad, and a Jockey , 1765, which sold at auction at Christie’s London in July 2011, for
£22.4 million. So, the Irish buyer, on this occasion, may have bagged a bargain.