Thomas Gainsborough

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Thomas Gainsborough
Landscape with Horse and Cart, and Ruin
Oil paint, lead white chalk, watercolor, over black chalk, varnished, on laid paper.
8 3/4 x 12 1/4 inches (222 x 312 mm)
Purchased by Pierpont Morgan (1837-1913) in 1909.
III, 55

Around the mid-1770s, the rolling topography of the natural setting, the gothicizing trees, and the shadowy atmospheres that characterized Gainsborough's earliest compositions gave way to wide clearings bathed in a Mediterranean brightness, inspired by the masterful Italianate landscapes of Claude Lorrain (1604/5-1682) and Gaspard Dughet (1615-1675). It was at this time that Gainsborough also tended to greater technical experimentation. By mixing different media and applying a thick coat of varnish to the surface of the finished sheet, he produced landscapes that mimicked the visual effects of oil paintings. -- Exhibition Label, from "Thomas Gainsborough: Experiments in Drawings."


Stamped in gold with monogram at lower left, "TG".

Charles Fairfax Murray (1849-1919), London and Florence; from whom purchased through Galerie Alexandre Imbert, Rome, in 1909 by Pierpont Morgan (1837-1913), New York (no mark; see Lugt 1509); his son, J. P. Morgan, Jr. (1867-1943), New York.
Associated names: 

Murray, Charles Fairfax, 1849-1919, former owner.
Morgan, J. Pierpont (John Pierpont), 1837-1913, former owner.


Bolzoni, Marco S. Thomas Gainsborough : Experiments in Drawings. New York : The Morgan Library & Museum, 2018, p. 57, no. 6, repr.
Collection J. Pierpont Morgan : Drawings by the Old Masters Formed by C. Fairfax Murray. London : Privately printed, 1905-1912, III, 55.

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