Original watercolor created for manuscript folio The Felidae

Condition: Very Good No Binding
From Arader Galleries San Francisco (San Francisco, CA, U.S.A.)

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Original watercolor created for the manuscript folio The Felidae. Cat Kind 19th Century Watercolor over graphite Each numbered and annotated in pencil Framed size: 15 measuring 27" x 24"; 2 measuring 24" x 27" Provenance: H. Bradley Martin The expansion of trade and growing exploration of the world, during the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, brought about a growing interest in the exotic with wild animals being captured and returned to Europe as both objects of curiosity and scientific specimens. In Britain, the eminent doctor William Hunter led the way in the study of these animals, acquiring not only living specimens but also assembling a considerable collection of paintings. The field was also aided by the foundation of the Linnaean Society in 1788, named after the creator of the now universal system of nomenclature for plants and animals. This institution expressly encouraged ‘the cultivation of the Science of Natural History in all its branches.’ Interest extended beyond scientific study to the general public at large and a menagerie was established at Exeter Change in the Strand by Pidock, a trader in wild animals. This proved to be exceptionally popular with the London public and artists frequently used it as a source for their paintings and drawings. Publications also fed the public interest in the exotic and perhaps Samuel Howitt’s Oriental Field Sports, is the finest example of this kind. Howitt, along with Charles Hamilton Smith, contributed to the stunning images of cats to be found in the manuscript Felidae. Smith, a lieutenant colonel in the army, seems to have specialized in the depiction of exotic animals perhaps reflecting his military career as the British Empire expanded. A collection of 64 of his drawings, depicting hunting scenes in Africa, North and South America, Ceylon, Australia, the Antarctic and Artic, can be found in the Paul Mellon Collection. Felidae was perhaps intended for eventual publication and reflects the work of scientists, such as the above-mentioned William Hunter, who specialized in comparative anatomy. However, the illustrations are more than just anatomical studies as they elegantly meld the art of watercolor painting with that of science to create enduring images with aesthetic appeal. The cats are skillfully placed within suitable landscapes to replicate their natural habitats and each animal possesses an element of animation reflecting their innate physical movement. Bookseller Inventory # sf002613432fra

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Title: Original watercolor created for manuscript ...

Binding: No Binding

Book Condition:Very Good

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The world's largest selection of the works of John James Audubon, Pierre-Joseph Redoute, Giovanni Battista Piranesi, historically important maps, natural history engravings and watercolors, lithographs of the American West, Californiana, Hawaiiana and Western Americana. Located at 432 Jackson Street in Historic Jackson Square, San Francisco, and online at www.aradersf.com.

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