Lot 174 in the 11 August British & International Pictures Auction features a pair of oils by British artist John Anthony Puller. The pair are each just barely taller than your average pint glass with an overall size of 25cm x 30cm each, but what they lack in size, they more than make up for in exquisite detail. Both pictures were acquired from Richard Green Gallery (Mayfair, London)—one of the most famous and prestigious of London art dealers.
Both oval compositions depict provincial scenes, mainly featuring women and children. ‘Figures and Animals at a Ford’ shows a family, along with their horse and goats as they cross the shallow ford, with the sun setting in the distance. Careful and precise brushstrokes by Puller are used to add touches of foliage to trees, facial features to each figure and perspective to the far-off landscape.
‘Women Fetching Water at a Stream’, a perfect pair for ‘Figures and Animals at a Ford’, portrays yet another group of figures with women and children. Here, women step down into the stream to gather water, while children play in the grass and livestock grazes. Puller’s steady hand added minute detail to the clouds in the sky, the bubbles in the stream and the branches on distant trees.
With an image size of just 13cm x 17cm each, the petite oval paintings are true masterpieces. The spectacular detail in each tiny composition conveys the incredible skill and mastery of the artist, and really must be seen in person to appreciate and admire the oils to their truest extent.
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