Photo credit: Glasgow Museums
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.’
The monogram looks quite similar to that used by Valentine Cameron Prinsep(1838-1904), except the V is the other way up on examples I have seen (C.F. this painting in a Sotheby's sale http://www.sothebys.com/en/auctions/ecatalogue/2009/victorian-edwardian-art-l09688/lot.15.html). I don't know his work well enough to say whether stylistically this painting is comparable to his work especially as what he produced seems quite varied over the course of his career.
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?
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.
It would also appear that F. Duane Godman of London published a catalogue of the “ Teacher Bequest of Pictures.” on 1901.
the National Art Library has copies of the 1901 and 1903 printed catalogues of The Teacher Collection
Glasgow Museums' curators of British and European art are out of the office until next week, but will respond as soon as possible.
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.
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.
It might be worth looking at early Grosvenor Gallery catalogues
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?
"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.
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.
None of the exhibits at the Grosvenor Gallery seem to fit UNLESS this is a portrait
It doesn't look like Charles Edward Perugini's monogram (image attached).
Can anyone identify the plant in this painting? It prominence might suggest some significance.
Possibly an olive or an oleander - there's not enough showing to be sure.
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).
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.
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.
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.
....but they do not look like this painting's one.
He uses more than one monogram, and certainly likes back to back C's.
Does the painting have its original frame, and if so what does it look like? This might provide a clue.
Can you please post the selection of ones of which you are aware?
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.