Please complete the form to email this item.

Watercolour - Buckingham House, St James's Park
  • Buckingham House, St James's Park
    Dayes, born 1763 - died 1804
  • Enlarge image

Buckingham House, St James's Park

  • Object:

    Watercolour

  • Place of origin:

    London, England (painted)

  • Date:

    1790 (painted)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Dayes, born 1763 - died 1804 (artist)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Watercolour, wash, pen and ink

  • Credit Line:

    Given by William Smith

  • Museum number:

    1756-1871

  • Gallery location:

    Prints & Drawings Study Room, level F, case WD, shelf 228

  • Download image

Edward Dayes (1763-1804) was one of the most respected watercolourists of the 18th century. He taught the artist Thomas Girtin (1775-1802) and also influenced Joseph Mallord William Turner (1775-1851).

His watercolour technique was typical of the later 18th century. After making a careful outline drawing in pen and ink, he would apply grey-blue washes with his brush. He would then use the colours to finish the painting. Here Dayes shows a magnificent building that is upstaged by the figures in front of it. In this he was challenging such artists as Thomas Rowlandson (1756-1827).

The architect John Nash (1752-1835) altered and enlarged Buckingham House in the mid 1820s for George IV. It then became known as Buckingham Palace.

Physical description

Watercolour depicting Buckingham House, St James's Park.

Place of Origin

London, England (painted)

Date

1790 (painted)

Artist/maker

Dayes, born 1763 - died 1804 (artist)

Materials and Techniques

Watercolour, wash, pen and ink

Dimensions

Height: 39.3 cm, Width: 64.2 cm

Descriptive line

Watercolour by Edward Dayes entitled 'Buckingham House, St James's Park'. Great Britain, 1790.

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Victoria and Albert Museum Department of Prints and Drawings and Department of Paintings, Accessions 1963 . London: HMSO, 1964.
The full text of the entry is as follows:

"GODWIN, Edward William, F.S.A. (1833-1886)
Sketch-book containing studies of stained glass, windows, capitals, fonts, bench-ends and other ecclesiastical architectural details. Also a sketch of an embroidered motif on a 13th century chasuble in the South Kensington museum. 44 pages of laid paper, thread-stitched in marbled boards. With sketches on various papers inserted, and pasted on to the main sheets.
Inscribed by the artist inside the front cover Book 2 and throughout with notes, place-names, measurements etc. Dated 11 September 1855 to 1869.
Pencil, pen and ink and water-colour. Size of volume
22.9 x 16.5 cm.
E.269-1963

Given by Mr. Edward Godwin, son of the artist"
Lambert, Susan (ed.) Pattern & Design: Designs for the Decorative Arts 1480-1980 London: Victoria and Albert Museum, 1983
The full text of the entry is as follows:

'4.3.a Edward William Godwin, F.S.A. (1833-1886)

Sketch-book containing studies of stained glass, windows, capitals, fonts, bench-ends and other ecclesiastical details. 44 pages of laid paper, thread-stitched in marbled boards. With sketches on various papers inserted, and pasted onto the main sheets.

Inscribed by the artist inside the front cover Book 2 and throughout with notes, place names, measurements etc. Dates ranging from 1855 to 1869. Pencil, pen and ink and water-colour. Size of volume 22.4 x 16.5 cm
Given by Edward Godwin, son of the designer.
E.269-1963

Open showing a sheet pasted in with a study of an embroidered motif on a 13th century chasuble drawn in this Museum. The drawing includes a detail showing embroidery stitch real size and is dated Feb.3.66.

4.3.a Edward William Godwin, F.S.A. (1833-1886)

Sketch-book containing studies of Egyptian and Assyrian, mediaeval, and 18th century costume (some after George Morland) with others copied from sources in the South Kensington and the British Museums. 144 pages (others missing) of metallic surfaced paper, full-bound in leather, metal clasp, pencil holder, a pocket in the front cover, and an almanac for the year 1882 pasted in.

Inscribed by the artist throughout with notes, references etc.
Pencil and water-colour. Size of volume 17.5 x 10.2 cm

Given by Edward Godwin, so of the designer
E.256-1963

Open showing a study of a female figure to the left of the centre in Edward Dayes's watercolour, Buckingham House, St James's Park (see cat. no. 4.3.c), inscribed with detailed colour notes. The next page in the sketch-book (pl.6) has a study of the small boy dressed in pink with a blue sash, to the right of the picture.

The two sketch-books are sixteen years apart in date.

4.3.c Edward Dayes (1763-1804)

Buckingham House, St James's Park.

Signed and dated Edw. Dayes 1790.
Watercolour. 39.3 x 64.2 cm
Given by William Smith
1756-1871

Literature: Repr. M. Hardie, Water-colour painting in Britain ... 1967-72, I, pl.194

Godwin made studies from this water-colour in 1882. Some fifty years later it was featured in the Museum as the 'Masterpiece of the week'. The beautifully presented label said of it 'There was a vogue in the latter half of the 18th century for engravings showing groups of well-dressed people at fashionable places of resort. Debucourt, Desrais and Gabriel de St Aubin made drawings for prints of this kind in France: Rowlandson, Bunbury and Dayes designed their English counterpart ... From the technical aspect, this is a fine example of the so-called 'stained' or 'tinted' drawing which was in vogue at the end of the 18th century. The subject was drawn in pen outline: all the shadow effect next added with a monochrome wash, in this case a mixture of indigo and Indian ink; then the colour was washed over the monochrome under-painting'.

The Museum possesses over 60 sketch-books by Godwin, spanning the whole of his career. Although primarily an architect, his interests spread to almost every area of design. The sketch-books are filled with drawn and written notes of things seen and for projects in hand.

That these sketches were made as an aid to inspiration rather than to provide patterns to follow is made clear by his statement in the sales catalogue of Art Furniture by Edward W. Godwin, F.S.A. and manufactured by William Watt, 1877 p.VIII that 'It is easy enough to make furniture in direct imitation of any particular style, especially the old English styles, with such Museums as that at Kensington open to us. What I have endeavoured to secure in design, has rather been a modern treatment of certain well-known and admired styles than a reproduction of old forms.'

The costume studies from Dayes's watercolour were made in the year Godwin was elected the Honorary Secretary of the Costume Society. Dudley Harbron, his biographer, stated that even in his teens he had drawn constantly from J.R. Planché's History of British costume from the earliest period to the close of the 18th century, 1834, and that he saw this appointment as an opportunity 'to prepare a series of plates to fill a portfolio consisting of forty drawings of historic costume each year. At long last he was able to become his own Planché.12 In fact these plates do not appear to have materialized. He did however publish, Dress, and its relation to health and climate for the International Health Exhibition in 1884. He was also taken on by Liberty's, as the catalogue 'Liberty' developments in form and colour issued in 1890 stated, 'to re-establish the craft of dressmaking upon some hygienic, intelligible and progressive basis; to initiate a renaissance that should commend itself artistically to leaders of art and fashion, and to challenge on its merits the heretofore all-powerful and autocratic fiat of Paris for 'change' and 'novelty' so far as it was oblivious of grace and fitness.' One of the sketch-books in the collection includes a study of a fashion parade at Liberty's.

SL

12 D.Harbron, The conscious stone, the life of Edward William Godwin, 1949, p.161.'

Materials

Watercolour; Pen and ink

Techniques

Wash

Subjects depicted

London; House; Crowd scenes; St. James's Park

Categories

Drawings; Paintings

Collection code

PDP

Download image
Qr_O74213
Ajax-loader