John Sell Cotman (1782-1842)
A Ploughed Field
Pencil and watercolour
In 1938 Leeds Art Gallery was fortunate to receive an extensive bequest of works by Cotman from one of his greatest collectors, Sydney Decimus Kitson.
A Ploughed Field remains one of the most popular watercolours in the collection.
John Sell Cotman (1782-1842). English landscape painter and etcher. He was a leading representative of the Norwich school. Cotman studied in London and in 1806 settled in Norwich where he opened an art school. He suffered periods of melancholia throughout his life.
He took up etching c.1810 and produced several series of etchings of English, and later French, antiquities. His Liber Studiorum (1838) is an outstanding work in this medium.
For the last nine years of his life he was a drawing master at King's College, London. Although Cotman's work was but little appreciated in his day, it is now highly prized for its fine color, decorative and structural qualities, and sustained poetic mood.
He is best known for his watercolors and drawings, of which the British Museum possesses many, including the famous Greta Bridge. Cotman's oil paintings are in many British galleries.
Article By: Dave Roberts.
First Published: 2007.
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