Drawings & Pastels

Drawing is a type of graphic art created with lines and areas of tone applied to paper usually with pencil, charcoal and coloured pencil, but a wash may also be applied.

They frequently serve as preparatory studies for other works, but are also considered works of art in their own right. A practitioner of drawing is known as a draughtsman.

Pastels are created using a stick made of pure pigment and a binder.

A key part of the general art market, both are also specialist collecting areas in their own right.


London Art Week

Drawing foundation Trois Crayons links up with London Art Week

24 February 2024

New partnership aims to boost London as a centre for Old Master drawings

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UK dealers happy with ‘buzzy’ New York drawings fair

19 February 2024

Running for the first time under new ownership Master Drawings New York (MDNY) produced strong results for many of its exhibitors, including London dealer Guy Peppiatt.

Élisabeth Louise Vigée Le Brun self portrait

Sotheby's sets record for a work on paper by a female Old Master

14 February 2024

Some of the strongest demand at the latest Old Master auctions in New York came among the works on paper sales.

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Pick of the week: Coachbuilders archive rolls up to £25,000

12 February 2024

With clients including the Maharajah of Kutch, Queen Victoria and multiple princes and dukes, Holmes & Co was one of the top coachbuilders of the 19th century.

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Scrimshaw reminder of the whaler that was captained and crewed by African-Americans

12 February 2024

A 19th century scrimshaw carved on board a whaling ship with an all African-American crew sold for $7250 (£5700) at Bruneau & Co (20% buyer’s premium).

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Serpent study by De Morgan slithers into view

12 February 2024

Among the images included in Emanuel von Baeyer’s latest catalogue is a study of a female nude by Evelyn De Morgan (1855-1919).

Most Read

Top stories this week including an ‘engraving’ that bidders discovered was a JMW Turner drawing

04 February 2024

The most viewed stories on this website over the last week included an ‘engraving’ that bidders discovered was a JMW Turner drawing.

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An Evelyn De Morgan drawing is among five lots to watch

15 January 2024

With estimates from £100, here are five previews of items coming up at auction this week.

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How George Romney was riled by prison hardship

15 January 2024

Some of the artist’s most modern and dramatic works were derived from his social concerns

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Fresh start for Master Drawings New York fair

15 January 2024

This month Master Drawings New York (MDNY) has its first run under new ownership.

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Rediscovered Spanish drawing among the highlights at MDNY

12 January 2024

A 16th century drawing would have been brought to "full technicolor" by women makers.

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Reminder of Rennie Mackintosh’s Suffolk sojourn

18 December 2023

A group of Charles Rennie Mackintosh (1868-1928) watercolours and drawings were sold on behalf of the Glasgow Art Club at Lyon & Turnbull’s (26% buyer’s premium) Design since 1860 sale in Edinburgh.

Caspar David Friedrich sketchbook

Romantic painter Friedrich’s sketchbook emerges in saleroom as a rare survivor

11 December 2023

Without doubt, the sensation of the German auction season was the emergence of a sketchbook belonging to the German romantic painter Caspar David Friedrich at Grisebach (32/27% buyer’s premium) in Berlin.

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Original Lalique jewellery designs go on show

11 December 2023

A design for a swan-shaped pendant suspended by a gracefully curved neck and bearing a scene of two more swans is among the highlights at an exhibition on the drawings and sketches of René Lalique (1860-1945).

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What’s cooking in the Cotswolds: Steadman and Knuttel

04 December 2023

It is often said that the mark of a good illustrator is that their work is instantly recognisable.

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The web shop window: Picture of four ‘gossiping’ hats

27 November 2023

Thousands of items are available to buy from dealers online. Here we pick out one that caught our eye this week.

Princess Harriner

Salisbury sketches to raise funds for Walpole Society

20 November 2023

A group of works by society portraitist Frank O Salisbury are being auctioned at Roseberys to raise money for the British art charity the Walpole Society.

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‘Profumo Affair’ sketch brings £8500

20 November 2023

Stephen Ward (1912-63) will no doubt always be remembered as the man who introduced the model Christine Keeler to the politician John Profumo.

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Drawing by young Elizabeth II failed to impress her mother

13 November 2023

The October 18-19 sale at Everard Auctions (25% buyer’s premium) in Savannah, Georgia, featured manuscripts, photos and ephemera focused on European royalty.

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Pen and wash works marked for Hans Bols make waves

23 October 2023

Old Master drawings inscribed for Flemish artist Hans Bols blow away the estimates in Chartres

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