Lot 47

A signed collotype print of The Roscommon Dragoon by Sir William Orpen, K.B.E., R.A., R.I., R.H.A. (1878-1931).

Estimate: €600 – €800.

SOLD €800 (Hammer price).

Signed by Orpen in pencil lower right margin; inscribed by the late Michael Freyer on the reverse and with an exhibition label on the reverse.

Medium: Colour collotype print on cream wove paper; (from a limited edition of 300).

Size:16½ x 13¾ inches (41.91 x 34.93cm).

Framed Size: 28.50 x 22.25 inches (72.39 x 56.52cm).

Condition: Excellent condition.

Provenance: Gift from the sitter, Mrs. Vera Hone, to Jodie and Michael Freyer, 17 April 1959.
Estate of Michael Freyer.
Whyte’s, 19 September 2006, Dublin, lot 128;
Private collection.

Exhibited: ‘Exhibition of Facsimiles en Coleur after Great Masters of Modern painting’, Daniel Egan Gallery, Dublin, July 1930.

The inscription on the reverse recalls an anecdote told by Vera Hone, the model for this work, concerning the Roscommon Infantry militia shako she holds, which was so large that her arm did not extend fully around it; her hand had therefore to be painted in separate sittings. Published by the Fine Art Society, London, in a limited edition of 300, circa 1919.

The original painting is circa 1912/13.


Lot 48

‘Coming Back Soon’.

An illustrated letter by Sir William Orpen.

Estimate: €1,000 – €1,500.

SOLD €1000 (Hammer price).

Signed and with a handwritten letter on the reverse.

Medium: ink; (unframed).

Size: 8 x 5¼ inches, (20.32 x 13.34cm).

Condition: Excellent condition. 

Letter on reverse –

“How’s Alla (possibly E.L. Alabester), tell him to write to me also Mrs. Gifford (Grace Gifford) she might send me a tramp or something of the sort. If you see Geoghegan ask him why the blazes he does not send me some prints of Lawson’s portrait, (Brig-General Lawson*).

When you walk down the Strand

with your guide book in your hand

No matter what’s the weather

Mind you keep your feet together

in case you might slip down.

You did not know I was a poet”.

William O.

Note – The names mentioned indicate this illustrated letter is from 1907.

Lieutenant-General Sir Henry Merrick Lawson KCB (1859 – 1933) was a British Army General during World War I. Commander of the 13th Infantry Brigade in Dublin in 1906.

B&W photo of Lawson’s painting by Sir William Orpen (1907).

Grace Gifford, a student of Sir William Orpen at The Dublin Metropolitan Art School.

 See also: https://www.sirwilliamorpen.com/kildare-street-club-by-sir-william-orpen/

Whyte’s auction link: https://www.whytes.ie/auction/spring-online-art-auction/874/?OrderBy=&arrangeby=list&numPerPage=15&artistid=19223

Post by Dominic Lee, Orpen Research Archives.