Avignon on the Rhône, France

Avignon on the Rhône, France



William Callow, R.W.S. (1812-1908)
Avignon on the Rhône, France

Signed with initials lower left and inscribed lower right:
Avignon Juil. 30 '36
Watercolour over pencil heightened with white on brown paper
15.7 by 27 cm., 6 by 10 ½ in.

In 1831, Callow shared a studio with Thomas Shotter Boys in Paris and he remained in the city for ten years. The present on the spot sketch dates from Callow's first sketching tour, to the south of France, in the summer of 1836. He set off from Paris on 6th June with a German friend called Soherr and travelled along the Loire and then continued south down the Rhone. His diary entry for the 30th July reads: `…The picturesque town is entirely surrounded by walls, and has a pretty promenade with lime-trees on the banks of the Rhone, which is very broad here, and over it is wooden bridge, and there are also remains of built in the 12th century. Saw the Palace of the Popes, which has more the appearance of a prison with its severe towers; also visited the cathedral, containing some fine monuments' (see William Callow R.W.S. F.R.G.S. - An Autobiography, edited by H.M. Cundall, 1908, p. 41).

A drawing of the harbour at Marseille, dated 28
th July, was with Guy Peppiatt Fine Art in 2016 (see Guy Peppiatt Fine Art, British Drawings and Watercolours, 2016, no.24, ill. p.28). Another of Aix-en-Provence dated 29th July was with Guy Peppiatt Fine Art in 2009 (see Guy Peppiatt Fine Art, 18th and 19th Century British Drawings and Watercolours, exhibition catalogue 2009, no.28, ill. p.30).

This is the basis for a finished watercolour dated 1838 sold at Sotheby's on 4th July 2001, lot 256. It is view taken from the west bank of the Rhone looking towards Avignon, with the twin towers of the Papal Palace prominent.