A very fine Irish watercolour study of a willow pattern plate, Cork, 1854
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A very fine and rare example of Irish folk art. An unusual, but very fine, watercolour of a blue willow pattern plate, with a label to back explaining its provenance. The label reads 'Drawn from a plate at Fermoy House by a poor tramp that grandfather befriended, as a token of his gratitude" The painting is dated in fine script, "Cork, Francis Hennis Esq, 1854, June 14th" On this occasion this is not the artist but the person to whom the painting was gifted, Francis Hennis. Fermoy House was described in 1837 as as being occupied by 'the lady of the late Major Hennis and is a handsome mansion, beautfiully situated on gently sloping lawn bunded by the river" By the mid 20th century it had been divided into five flats and was demolished in the 1960s. Francis Hennis (1802-1892) was the son of Major Hennis, and the brother of Dr Peter Hennis, the hero of the cholera outbreak in Exeter in 1832 who was the last known person to be killed in a duel in Devon in 1833.
The plate and scroll beneath have been cut out and laid onto paper (probably when framed in the early 20th century) and then housed in an early 20th century oak frame with the original framers label in Cork, Ireland still in place.
The execution of the portrait shows the artist (described as a tramp) was an extremely accomplished artist, perhaps someone who had previously been involved in the decorating of porcelain or plates. His identity, sadly, is lost to the mists of time but he has left behind a superb example of his work.
The painting remains vivid and is good condition with one small white patch on the plate at arount the two o' clock position
Measuring: Frame - 47 cm x 39.5 cm diameter of painting of plate 25 cm