The 20 x 15in (50 x 39cm) signed oil on canvas depicts the garden at Garth House, the Gore family home in Hertfordshire, seen through a window framed by curtains. The work was undated but the rural scene, painted in an Impressionistic style, was a favourite motif of the artist in the first decade of the 20th century (another such view titled The Garden Path is in the collection of Pallant House in Chichester).
Cheffins’ painting, which had a provenance to the Lefevre Gallery in London, was consigned from a local vendor who had inherited it from his grandfather, probably a couple of decades ago, said Cheffins’ Martin Millard. He described the condition as “very nice indeed, very clean, it hadn’t been messed around with and it was ready to go”.
Of the £7000-10,000 estimate, Millard said “we approached it with a little bit of caution”, based on what the auctioneers felt was the slightly soft performance of similar Gore landscapes on the market recently – Gore’s more obviously ‘Camden Town’ London scenes tend to be more commercial.
Nevertheless, plenty of interest emerged for this work on the day. The auctioneers had what they felt was a reasonable commission bid, but this was soon outpaced with four phones contesting the lot. The final battle was between two phones, a private buyer who was the successful purchaser and an underbidder from the British trade.