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Paintings and drawings by Edmund Blampied, R.E.

Leicester Galleries, London, March - April 1925

This page is a recreation using monochrome photographs of an exhibition of oil paintings held in 1925.

The photographs were taken for Blampied by the fine art photographers A.C. Cooper, who are still in business. The photos, even though they are in monochrome, give an idea of the sort of scenes that Blampied was painting in oils the early 1920s and the places he had visited and found inspiration: Paris, Annecy and the Basque country of France and Spain.

Many of the photographs are owned by the Blampied family, but Marianne Blampied gave some away to her friends or may have sold some. I bought some at auction. I'd like to thank the Blampied family for allowing me to reproduce the photographs. The catalogue was lent to me by the late Beatrice (Betty) Irvin, the daughter of Blampied's friend John Nicolson, who was sharing a house in Norwood with Edmund and Marianne when this exhibition was held.

I have listed the serial number of the photograph given by A.C. Cooper, recorded on the back or most prints, presumably so that more could be printed from the negatives. This number helps to date the paintings around major exhibitions. The Cooper numbers are given below, when known, with the initials ACC. Cooper's record books of these photographs were destroyed by water during the Second World War.

There were probably oil sketches of all these paintings as two are known, of cat 66 and 75, which are illustrated.

Image of cover of catalogue

Cover of catalogue (click to enlarge)



Image of pages of catalogue

List of paintings in catalogue (click to enlarge)




Catalogue number: 61

Title: A Basque Farm

ACC: 28566

Notes: This is one of several scenes of rural France shown in the exhibition. Note that item 87 in the catalogue is a drawing with the same title, perhaps a preparatory sketch.

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Catalogue number: 62

Title: The green vraic cart

ACC: not known

Notes: This image was reproduced in The Bystander in a review of the exhibition.

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Catalogue number: 63

Title: Paris

ACC: 28568

Notes: This could be cat 84 'On the banks of the Seine'.

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Catalogue number: 64

Title: An Annecy Arch, Savoie

ACC: 28538

Notes: This is one of two scenes in Annecy. The arch is called the Porte de Sépulchre et faubourg Ste-Claire, now a pedestrian precinct.


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The painting sold at auction in 2014 (Click to enlarge)

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Catalogue number: 65

Title: Vraicking. A Spring morning

ACC: 28537

Notes: One of two vraicking scenes, which Blampied called his 'signature tune'.


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Painting sold at auction (Click to enlarge)

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Catalogue number: 66

Title: Building a Cathedral near Annecy

ACC: 28562

Notes: This is the Basilica of the Visitation, built between 1909 and 1930 on a hill overlooking the town of Annecy. The painting is in the collection of Leeds City Art Gallery.


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Oil sketch, in a private collection (Click to enlarge)

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Catalogue number: 67

Title: Harvesting in Savoie

ACC: 28534

Notes: A scene near Annecy in Savoie.

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Catalogue number: 68

Title: The three horses

ACC: 28540

Notes: This is was sold at an auction in the USA in the late 1930s.

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Catalogue number: 69

Title: A Jersey Kitchen

ACC: 28557

Notes: This title is guessed from the catalogue. Blampied did other, similar, pictures of this domestic scene.

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Catalogue number: 70

Title: Fontarabia

ACC: 28542

Notes: This is the town of Hondarriba in the Basque country of Spain, just across the border from St Jean de Luz in France. The church is called Santa Maria de La Asuncion y del Manzano.

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Catalogue number: 71

Title: Loading a barge on the Seine

ACC: 28539

Notes: Blampied also designed a drypoint of this scene, but in reverse, entitled 'Shooting rubbish' [CD: 87; AA: 100; AH: 24.3]. It was not published.

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Catalogue number: 72

Title: The house with three trees (Basque)

ACC: 28558

Notes: A preliminary drawing in ink and wash for this painting is shown below. The differences are interesting. In the oil the haystack and haycart are removed and replaced with a wall; an extension has been added to the house; the hills in the background have gone; and the man on the stairs is now in the top window, talking to the figure standing by an ox-cart facing left.


Image of drawing

Image of painting

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Catalogue number: 73

Title: Sabre de Bois (Wooden sword)

ACC: 28541

Notes: This is a typical Blampied scene of people arguing, probably in a tavern.

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Catalogue number: 74

Title: Urrugne (Basque)

ACC: 28559

Notes: This is the Church of St Vincent in Urrugne, near St Jean de Luz in the Basque region of France.

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Catalogue number: 75

Title: Galloping home in the rain

ACC: 28564

Notes: This painting is based on an etching, 'Driving home in the rain' [CD: 32; AA:35; AH:E14.1], designed in 1914, published in 1919.


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Oil sketch, in a private collection (Click to enlarge)

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Catalogue number: 76

Title: In a stable

ACC: 28556

Notes:

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Catalogue number: 77

Title: Tethering cows (Jersey)

ACC: not seen

Notes: No photograph of this painting has been seen. I suspect it shows a woman in a bonnet leading a cow across a meadow, with a spike and mallet to hand. Blampied did an oil painting of a similar subject for HMS Jersey in 1939.




Catalogue number: 78

Title: Haymaking, Jersey

ACC: 28561

Notes: The was reproduced in the magazine Woman in May 1925 along with 'Galloping home in the rain' (cat 75).

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Catalogue number: 79

Title: A morning mist (Vraicing)

ACC: no number

Notes: This is similar to the lithograph, 'Vraic load' [AA:L17; AH:L24.2], published in 1924 except that the position of the white horse in the foreground is different. See the proof owned by the Boston Public Library here.

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Catalogue number: 80

Title: The potato digger

ACC: 28567

Notes: There is a lithograph of a similar design called 'Potato digging' [AA:L9; AH:L23.2], published in 1923. Jersey Heritage Trust have a proof but I can't find it on their web site without trawling through all 900 items. The facility to search within results doesn't work.

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Catalogue number: 81

Title: A harbour scene (Spain)

ACC: 28569

Notes: There is a drypoint of this scene called 'San Sebastian, Harbour' [CD:61; AA:98; AH:E24.1], published in an edition of 100 in 1924. There is a watercolour of the design for the print at the Cincinatti Museum of Art, which can be seen here. I have a drawing in pen and ink of the same design as the print, so probably done afterwards.

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Catalogue number: 82

Title: In St. Jean-de-Luz

ACC: 28555

Notes:

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Catalogue number: 83

Title: Haystacks and Horses

ACC: 28536

Notes:

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Catalogue number: 84

Title: On the banks of the Seine

ACC: 28568

Notes: This could be cat 63 'Paris'.

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Catalogue number: 85

Title: Under the Pont Marie

ACC: 28563

Notes: This painting is in a private collection in the USA. This scene was also transferred to a drypoint of the same title, so was printed in reverse [CD:90; AA:111; AH:E25.12]. There are reported to be six proofs, one of which is in the British Museum.

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