GL_GM_846
Topic: Artist

It should be possible to identify this artist. The painting is signed and dated lower left. The cropped photograph on Art UK obscures the monogram, but another is attached.

The collection comments: ‘The full image can be found in Peter Humfrey's extensive catalogue “Glasgow Museums: The Italian Paintings”, London, 2012, p. 313 (for quick reference an iPhone snapshot is attached). The signature is a monogram in the form of entwined initials which could be read as RP or PR or perhaps RR. Below it stands “Roma.1875”. Unfortunately, to this date the painter's name has not been identified. Even if the picture was painted in Rome, it is also not certain that the artist was Roman, or even Italian.’

Martin Hopkinson, Entry reviewed by Art UK

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27 comments

Kieran Owens,

It would appear that this monogram is made up of the secondary letters of two opposing letters C, one in normal state and the other its mirror image, and a main letter of A or perhaps a lambda. The artist's initials could, thus, be CCA or CCL.

As a wild alternative, the painting might be by a Russian painter based in Europe at the time that Teacher was collecting his Continental works, in which case the initials could be CCΛ or, phonetically, SSL. If this wild suggestion has some credibility, then perhaps the city name of Roma is in fact a Russian city's or place's name. See the attached example of written cyrillic for lettering comparison.

Also, is the collection certain that the final numeral of the date of 1875 is actually 5?

Attached is a small description Adam Teacher's 1898 bequest. Perhaps Glasgow Museums Resource Centre can identify the name of a possible Russian painter from Glasgow Corporation's original records of this gift.

The assessed value of Teacher's estate following his death was £479,932. In order to arrive at the sum, might an inventory of his paintings have been attached to his will?

Kieran Owens,

In 1903, the Corporation of Glasgow, Museums and Art Galleries, produced 'A Catalogue of the Teacher Bequest of Pictures', a 24-page item printed by Robert Anderson of 142 West Nile Street, Glasgow. Surely this work must be listed therein. If so, could Glasgow Museums Resource Centre check to see if 'Engaged' is a listed title? Perhaps they could also provide a PDF of the whole booklet for examination.

Kieran Owens,

It would also appear that F. Duane Godman of London published a catalogue of the “ Teacher Bequest of Pictures.” on 1901.

Martin Hopkinson,

the National Art Library has copies of the 1901 and 1903 printed catalogues of The Teacher Collection

Kieran Owens,

The Glasgow Herald, of Monday 4th July 1898, printed a full list of the 117 paintings bequeathed to Glasgow Corporation by Adam Teacher. The list identifies the work as being entitled 'Engaged', and as painted by 'R.P.' in 'Roma'. It might well be that at the time the monogram was mis-read. Attached is the newspaper extract.

A word search of the sixth volume (O - R) of Graves' Dictionary of Contributors to the Royal Academy of Arts' exhibitions returns no result for a work entitled 'Engaged'. A similar search of the Royal Scottish Academy's list of exhibited works equally returns no result for a work thus entitled and additionally no artist's name appears that shares an R. and a P. as the initials of a christian name and surname.

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Kieran Owens,

Regarding the Scottish Academy, no artist's name appears either that shares a P. and an R. as the initials of a christian name and surname.

Martin Hopkinson,

It might be worth looking at early Grosvenor Gallery catalogues

Kieran Owens,

Marion, here's that question again....might there be any labels etc on the back of this painting that might help in revealing its identity?

Paul Nicholls,

"Roma" rather than "Rome" might suggest the artist is Italian, but the number "7" is not crossed, as is usual in Italy and elsewhere on the continent, so I think this is probably a non-European artist who has adopted the Italian name for the city .
The monogram might be P.P., with the first letter reversed, or even G.P. - it is not clear.
In my opinion, stylistically this is not by an Italian. It would need to be by an Italian with English connections, someone like Giulio Aristide Sartorio, but that interpretation unfortunately does not fit the case.

Jacinto Regalado,

I would suggest Charles Edward Perugini, but his pictures tended to have a higher or smoother finish. Still, it would be interesting to know what monogram he used, for comparison.

Martin Hopkinson,

None of the exhibits at the Grosvenor Gallery seem to fit UNLESS this is a portrait

Kieran Owens,

Can anyone identify the plant in this painting? It prominence might suggest some significance.

Osmund Bullock,

Possibly an olive or an oleander - there's not enough showing to be sure.

Kieran Owens,

The following link, to an article on the Russian artistic colony in Rome in the latter half of the 19th century, might serve to at least warrant the consideration that this discussion's painting is by a Russian artist with the cyrillic monogram CCΛ (phonetically, SSL).

https://bit.ly/2Te9s2F

Jessica Edwards,

It has a similar style to some paintings by Sir John Everett Millais, like a moment caught on canvas as if it were a photo. I'm not suggesting that's who the artist is, the monogram isn't quite right to begin with, but maybe someone copying his style.

Malcolm Rogers,

Following the suggestion above that the monogram is CC or CCA, it might be worth exploring the possibility that the painting is by the American Artist Charles Caryl Coleman (1840-1928), who lived in Rome from the late 1860s to the mid 1880s in the Keats House. Coleman married Mary Edith Grey Alsage (?A) in 1875, the year of the painting. The branch of oleander or olive in the background is strongly reminiscent of the branches which feature prominently and habitually in Coleman's still-life paintings (e.g. Metropolitan Museum, New York, and Museum of Fine Arts, Boston). Coleman uses various monograms of his initials, and it is worth comparing Interior with Lute Player, signed in monogram and dated Roma 1875, which was sold at Heritage Auctions, New York 17 Nov 2014, lot 68156.

Jacinto Regalado,

The monogram of Charles Caryl Coleman appears to have been three C's in a sort of triangular arrangement, two back-to-back and one upturned above them.

Kieran Owens,

....but they do not look like this painting's one.

Malcolm Rogers,

He uses more than one monogram, and certainly likes back to back C's.

Malcolm Rogers,

Does the painting have its original frame, and if so what does it look like? This might provide a clue.

Kieran Owens,

Can you please post the selection of ones of which you are aware?

Osmund Bullock,

On this website https://bit.ly/2MKvXhW there are 18 of his works where some sort of monogram is visible. Of those, 16 are of the ‘triple C’ variety as per the ‘Interior with Lute Player’ of 1875 (https://bit.ly/3nqlyoi).

The two that have different signature forms date from 1867 (or possibly ’69 – at ‘Paris’) & 1922, i.e. early and very late in his career. Of the 16 with the ‘triple C’, 14 have a date readable or given in the image coding, and they all lie between 1875 & 1912 (with examples from every one of the five decades). Ten of them also have a visible place-name (‘Roma’ or ‘Capri’), and it is notable that in *every* case where a place is given – Paris, Roma or Capri – it is written in upper-case letters throughout (albeit with a larger first letter), not partly in lower case like ours.

A comparison of the Lute Player’s inscription with ours is attached, and you can see there are other differences in the style. I think it unlikely that Coleman would have tried to get his wife’s maiden surname into the mix – why not her first name? – and I doubt the inscriptions/monograms are by the same artist. To be sure, though, it would be good to find some paintings by Coleman signed and dated 1870-74 – like Kieran, I'm having trouble seeing a ‘5’ as the last digit of the date in ours.

My current feeling is that Martin’s reading is the most likely, and that we should be looking for a name in the grouping RP–PR–PP–RR.

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Marcie Doran,

I am wondering if this might read “C. R.” and be an early work by the Italian artist Claudio Rinaldi (1852 - after 1909). He seems to always sign in bright red, uses that diagonal slash, often adds the full year, and often adds the location “Firenze” (Florence).

He would have visited Rome in 1875. Wikipedia notes the following: “During 1874-1875, he was awarded a scholarship by the Institute of Fine Arts of Urbino to study at the Academy of Fine Arts of Florence.”

The first composite compares the olive (?) branches from the Art UK work to the ones from “Merrymaking” (from the Artnet website). https://tinyurl.com/puewa329

The second composite compares the signatures on those two works. I realize the “R” is not the same, and the signature on “Merrymaking” is not backwards.

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