'Launch of the Sopwith' by Sir Frank Brangwyn – £900 at Keys.

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Good competition came for a pen, ink and watercolour of a large ship leaving port by Sir Frank Brangwyn (1867-1956) which was estimated by the Norfolk saleroom at £200-250.

Measuring 11¾ x 10¼in (30 x 26cm), the monogrammed sketch titled Launch of the Sopwith also came with an autographed note by the artist which, although parts were difficult to decipher, included the words: “I thought this might interest the Nicholsons.”

Brangwyn had a varied output and examples of his watercolours appear regularly at auction, ranging in price from the low hundreds to over £10,000 for the largest and most fully resolved works. This one was somewhere in the middle – an attractive subject, although the unframed picture was seemingly completed on a scrap of paper which may well have limited its commercial value.

After a lively bidding contest, it sold at £900 to a private buyer.

Rutherston study


Pastel drawing of a seated man by Albert Daniel Rutherston – £300 at Keys.

Also offered at the June 19 auction with a keen estimate was a pastel portrait of a man seated reading a book by Albert Daniel Rutherston (1881- 1953). Here the pitch was only £40-60.

The artist was born in Bradford and had German Jewish descent (he anglicised his family name of Rothenstein during the First World War). He was the brother of Sir William Rothenstein and the collector Charles Rutherston.

His works were exhibited widely during his lifetime, including at the Leicester Galleries in London, and this was an attractive 14¼ x 10½in (36 x 27cm) study which was signed and dated 1900. It was knocked down to the trade at £300.

Chapman landscape

Also selling to the trade was a George Chapman (1908-93) print that overshot a £200-250 estimate to take £580. Depicting a landscape with fence and cottage, the catalogue stated that the subject of the 11 x 19¾in (28 x 50cm) signed aquatint was possibly Great Bardfield – the village in Essex where he moved to in the 1950s and became part of the artistic community.

Leading the picture lots at the Aylsham sale was an LS Lowry (1887-1976) signed print. St Luke’s Church, Old Street, London was from an edition of 850 published by GR Mellor in 1973. Estimated at £1000-1500, it took £2100 from a private buyer.