Julius Caesar Ibbetson

Briton Ferry, Glamorgan

c.1795

Medium
Oil paint on wood
Dimensions
Display: 352 x 457 mm
frame: 500 x 605 x 63 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Bequeathed by Alan Evans 1974
Reference
T01889

Display caption

The view shows the area of Briton Ferry at the mouth of the River Neath in South Wales. Ibbetson visited Wales several times and this composition probably originated during his visit to nearby Cardiff Castle in 1789. This painting, however, is a later version of the subject, based on a watercolour of 1795.
In the latter part of the eighteenth century, the comparatively unknown landscape of Wales was popularised through the publication of travel-guides, particularly the Revd. William Gilpin's 'Observations on the River Wye' 1782, which encouraged artists to go in search of 'picturesque' scenery. This charming coastal scene was painted on wood which has helped to conserve its remarkable freshness of atmosphere.

Gallery label, September 2004

Catalogue entry

T01889 BRITON FERRY, GLAMORGANSHIRE c. 1795

Not inscribed
Oil on panel, 13 13/16×18 (35.1×45.8)
Bequeathed by Alan Evans to the National Gallery and transferred to the Tate Gallery 1974
Coll: ...; Christie's 17 July 1908 (57) bt. Heigham; ...; probably sold by Leggatt Brothers to the Hon. Frederic Wallop in the 1920s; Alan Evans
Lit: Rotha Mary Clay, Julius Caesar Ibbetson, 1948, p.42; Julius Caesar Ibbetson, exhibition catalogue, Kenwood 1957, p.12, no.20.
Exh: Kenwood 1957 (20)

Ibbetson exhibited a painting with the same title at the R.A. in 1790 (109), so presumably he had visited Briton Ferry on the River Neath during his stay at Cardiff Castle in 1789. T01889 is a later version, based on a watercolour dated 1795 (exhibited Kenwood 1957, No. 70; private collection). Ibbetson and his patron Colonel Robert Fulke Greville visited Briton Ferry during their tour of Wales in 1792, as another watercolour shows (Victoria and Albert Museum).

Published in:
The Tate Gallery 1974-6: Illustrated Catalogue of Acquisitions, London 1978

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