Monday, 13 August 2012

Haslehust mystery painting

Three years ago - see EW Haslehust ... and artfight! - I mentioned the work of Ernest William Haslehust (1855-1949), a watercolourist who specialised in slightly prettified, but nevertheless skilful and evocative, paintings of English landscapes and townscapes. His work was a mainstay of Blackie & Sons' classic Beautiful England series.

Arising from that, Susan Henderson sent me an image - reproduced by permission - of a  unknown Haslehust painting that belonged to her husband's grandmother.

click to enlarge
Does the scene ring any bells with anyone? I've made a best guess at perspective and lighting correction. My initial theory is that this is a mid-Victorian villa, judging by some stylistic features (the gabled porch and pseudo-Jacobean square profile chimney stacks) - compare these mid-1800s estate cottages in Kingston, Dorset, Betteshanger House., and South Lodge, Mentmore Towers. Any number of architects of this period were designing houses in approximately this style.

A quick skim of sources - so far unsuccessful - has produced some lovely books. Check out:
It makes for an interesting impression of the contribution of the moneyed middle to upper classes to the architectural stereotypes of the Home Counties landscape.

See also Haslehust Mystery Painting #2.

- Ray

1 comment:

  1. I recently purchased The "Mystery Painting" at an auction,and would love to find out more about it.Don't know if it is the original or remake, but signiture looks hand written.
    Any help would be greatly helpful.