The Cotman Collection | 46

Cotmania. Vol. VII. 1931-2

Archive: SDK Sydney Decimus Kitson Archive
Reference Number: SDK/1/2/1/7
Page: 14 recto

  • Description

    Kitson's diary entries for 13 and 20 May 1932; extract from Palser Gallery catalogue

    Visit to Palser Gallery, where an exhibition includes John Sell Cotmans; declaration by Palser Gallery on its dedication to the English Water Colour School; works by Thirtle and John Sell Cotman (attributed) sent on approval

    Date: 1932

  • Transcription

    May 13, 1932. Called at Palser Gallery, saw Thomson. He has an exh[ibitio]n. The Cotman ‘Castle Acre’ is a good early drawing, c 1804, but the colour is rather dull – evidently faded. The ‘Kirkham Abbey’ (which has been loaned to him) is a most beautiful watercolour c. 1805. He also has a late one (also on loan) of ‘Gunton Woods’ – very good, paste medium.

    [Catalogue extract]
    FOR over a hundred years the name of Palser has been linked with English Landscape painting, and more particularly with the Water Colour School.
    At the Old Palser Gallery in King Street, Covent Garden, collectors were wont to meet to see the latest drawings and discuss with one another the merits of the rising artists of their day: there they came to know the charm and beauty of the works of Cozens, Girtin and Cotman.
    The English Water Colour School, so ably fostered in its beginnings by Dr. Munro, has ever been the branch of the Fine Arts to which Palsers have been devoted, and by long association the name has become authoritative in anything appertaining to this phase of the Arts.
    It is my intention to carry on this tradition, and as in the past many of the finest examples of the works of Cox, Cotman and De Wint came from this source to enrich public and private collections, so in the future by the judicious acquisition of the best to be procured it is hoped that the Palser Gallery may continue to be the rendezvous of that increasing band of enthusiasts who gather joy and relaxation in the study and collection of examples of that peculiarly English Art—the Art of Water Colour Painting.

    \89 Woodland Glade, Gunton Park. 8½ x 12¾in.

    May 20, 1932. Mr. Henry Parr, on the initiative of Lemy[?], (7 Wood St. Norwich.)
    Sent me on approval (1) Portrait of Mrs. Parr, (née Miles) on the beach at Cromer, w[ater]c[olour] signed ‘Thirtle pinxit’, very faded, indigo flown & left the light red sitting – long nosed, sad woman, red cloak, white dress, straw bonnet, dog. He asked £30 – returned it. Exh[ibite]d Norwich School Exh[ibitio]n 1927, No. 276, 15” x 11½”
    He also sent (2) A pencil drawing (11” x 8½”) attributed to J.S.C of Mrs. J.S.C. for which he asked £4. This is so like Graham Cotman’s drawing of the same subject, that I think there is no doubt of its genuineness.

Kitson's diary entries for 13 and 20 May 1932; extract from Palser Gallery catalogue