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  • CORK HARBOUR IN ART AT MORGAN O’DRISCOLL

     Entrance to Cork Harbour (1874-75) by Richard Brydges Beechey (1808-1895)  €30,000-€50,000) 

    The magnificent entrance to Cork Harbour is depicted in detailed works by two 19th century artists at Morgan O’Driscoll’s sale of Irish and International Art on April 19.  Rear Admiral Richard Brydges Beechey shows two sailing vessels at Roches Point in what former Crawford Gallery curator Peter Murray describes in a catalogue note as one of his finest maritime paintings. The dramatic oil shows a small lugger in the foreground – almost certainly a Cork pilot vessel –  heading towards a two masted brigantine making its way with difficulty towards the open sea. Roches Point lighthouse and coastguard cottages are in the background and a signal tower dating to Napoleonic times is seen on the right.  The painting dates to 1874-75. In a painting dating to about 25 years earlier Cobh artist George Mounsey Wheatley Atkinson shows a three masted barque passing Roches Point as it leaves Cork Harbour. The southerly wind is not in the ships favour. The lighthouse was rebuilt in 1839 and the picture is thought to be around 1850.  Peter Murray points to the acute observation of sky and cloud formations and   accurate rendering of ships and their rigging as testament to Atkinson’s training as a ships carpenter and his years as an inspector of shipping in Cork Harbour.

    A Barque passing Roches Point lighthouse, at the entrance to Cork Harbour (c.1850) by George Mounsey Wheatley Atkinson (€6,000-€9,000)

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