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.


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Unknown drawings by ‘father of British watercolours’ comes to light in Edinburgh

22 December 2008

A Borders property provided Thomson Roddick (15% buyer's premium) with a sensational discovery for their sale in Rosewell, Edinburgh on December 4.

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The $180,000 Beardsley that hung in a Boston bathroom

24 November 2008

FOUND hanging in a Boston bathroom, the whereabouts of this Aubrey Beardsley (1872-1898) illustration had been a mystery for more than 80 years. Entitled The Climax, and hanging in the lavatory alongside another Beardsley pen-and-ink drawing called A Platonic Lament, the owners had no idea of its significance.

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Goya on paper is sales series winner

08 August 2008

TO the connoisseurial mind, it was not the paintings that lit up the Old Master series in London in early July but rather three rediscovered drawings by Francisco José de Goya y Lucientes (1746-1828) offered in a dedicated Old Master and 19th century works on paper sale at Christie’s on July 8.

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Tintin cover makes £500,000

14 April 2008

A world record price for a comic-strip illustration was paid at a specalist sale at Artcurial in Paris on March 29: Georges Remi Hergé’s 1932 ink-and-gouache design for the cover of Tintin en Amérique.

Trade take Drawings to New York

30 October 2006

MASTER Drawings in New York, a new Anglo-American trade initiative will be launched in January. It is modelled on Master Drawings in London which has been held since 2001.

Sir John Soane’s view of Bucks… all the way from Guernsey

23 October 2006

“A MOMENT of European importance” is how architects acknowledge Tyringham Hall in Buckinghamshire. It is one of the greatest country houses designed by Sir John Soane (1753-1837), the leading architect of his generation.

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When did you last see your Dadd?

18 July 2006

ENIGMATIC, elusive, rarely seen, and classified as mad – but that’s our Dadd!

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The watercolour effect

31 May 2005

The rainbow plate seen above right comes from an 1814 first issue* of David Cox’s Treatise on landscape Painting and Effect in Watercolours, an oblong folio work that incorporates a hand-coloured aquatint frontispiece and 31 plates (15 coloured, 15 in sepia) as well as 24 soft ground etchings.

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Pom beats Aussies to six colonial memories

01 March 2005

A group of 19th century sepia drawings, depicting Aborigines in Queensland, came up for auction at Brightwells (15% buyer’s premium) sale of paintings and prints on January 26 in Leominster, Herefordshire.

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David Jones jamboree at Crewkerne sale

03 February 2005

THE first afternoon session of a January 20-21 antiques sale held by Lawrences of Crewkerne presented more than 400 lots of books, amongst them a good collection of private press books featuring the wood-engraved illustrations of David Jones.

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...and, illustrating the point

22 December 2004

“Business has been good, but to achieve this I have had to work extremely hard.” This is how Chris Beetles summed up 2004 and, having already taken over £500,000 in sales from his renowned annual exhibition of British illustrators, he is ending the year on a bullish note.

RA fairs news at the double

20 October 2004

NEXT year’s Watercolour and Drawings Fair will move to a new venue, the Royal Academy rooms at 6 Burlington Gardens, London W1, where it will run from February 3 to 6 with an opening evening preview on February 2.

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Kupka’s factory job

14 October 2004

THE Mira Jacob Collection sale at Bailly-Pommery-Voutier & Sotheby's (23.92 - 14.35% buyer's premium) included a smattering of drawings and watercolours by artists outside the dealer’s sphere of influence – from a small Picasso ink sketch of a Glass and Jar, bought in at €44,000, to a Degas pencil portrait of Thérèse Degas, 11 x 8 1/2in (28 x 22cm), which sold at a quadruple-estimate €77,000 (£52,400).

£30,000 for Il Guercino

09 September 2004

SOLD for £25,000 at Sotheby’s on June 25 was a group of letters, documents and sketches by Giovanni Francesco Barbieri, or Il Guercino [the ‘Squinter’], his painter nephew, Benedetto Gennari and his patron Claudio Bertazzoli, that relate to the former’s altarpiece for Santa Maria della Pieta dei Teatini in Ferrara – The Purification of the Virgin.

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Colourist provides new pastures for Meddowes in his role as art broker

01 September 2004

TURN the clock back some 30 years, and regulars to Bonhams’ Knightbridge rooms might just recall a rather dapper, pinstripe-suited auctioneer by the name of Alexander Meddowes.

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Touch of Frost over 60 years

18 August 2004

ON view at the Belgrave Gallery, St Ives, these two works by the late Sir Terry Frost represent a gap of some 60 years.

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High demand for portrait

10 August 2004

HIGHLIGHT of Sotheby’s (23.92/14.35% buyer's premium) book and manuscript sale on June 30 was Antonin Artaud’s 1947 portrait of his publisher Alain Gheerbrant, pencil, 14 x 20in (35 x 50cm), seen right, that made a double-estimate €210,000 (£140,000) to set a record for an Artaud drawing.

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Pissarro drawings of Venezuela

21 July 2004

A 56-sheet sketch book by Camille Pissarro, 8 x 11in (21 x 28cm), dating from his stay in Venezuela between April and August 1854, sold for €150,000 (£100,000) at Piasa (20.33/13.16% buyer's premium) on June 18.

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Ascent of the sketch to €115,000

21 July 2004

THE pencilled Assumption (with white highlights), 20 x 15in (50 x 37cm), shown right, turned up at Doutrebente on June 25 with a €4000 estimate.

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A little girl in the attic awakes to find herself surrounded by admirers

17 June 2004

FOUND lying face down in the attic of a local house, apparently unloved, the pastel portrait of a young girl reading a book seen right was the sleeper that awoke to a six-figure bid in an April 3 sale that gave Dennis Auction Service of Stewartsville, New Jersey, their first ever $1m sale total.

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