Wednesday, 3 August 2016

Equestrian Statue of Prince Frederick by John Cheere, Hartwell House

Equestrian Statue of Prince Frederick Louis (1707 - 57).
Prince of Wales.
Dressed in Roman Armour.
Hartwell House, Buckinghamshire.
by John Cheere.
Erected in 1757.
The right hand proper foreleg is very ungainly - the lead appears to have sagged - it is my guess that the iron armature within the leg has failed.
Hartwell was home of the Whig Sir Thomas Lee The family were prominent supporters of the Prince.
His brother Dr George Lee was adviser to the prince after the Excise Bill crisis of 1733 another brother was Sir William Lee was Lord Chief Justice.
Hartwell is currently leased to the National Trust. It currently operates as a country house hotel.

For the context of Prince Frederick and the Lees and the gardens at Hartwell see -
 Prince Frederick and Liberty: The Gardens of Hartwell House, Buckinghamshire, in the Mid-Eighteenth Century by Richard Wheeler Garden History  - Vol. 34, No. 1 (Summer, 2006), pp. 80-91. Journal of the Garden History Society. 
The quality of this statue begs the question - was it created by Cheere or was it modelled by another sculptor and cast by Cheere?

Frederick Louis, Prince of Wales.
Peter Scheemakers (1691 - 1781).
Shown here approximately 20 years younger.
In the Royal Collection St Georges Hall Windsor Castle.
Commissioned by Richard Temple, Viscount Cobham for the Temple of Friendship in the garden at Stowe, Buckinghamshire; by descent to 2nd Duke of Buckinghamshire; sold Christie's, 15 August 1848; bought Rainey; fifth Earl Temple; by whom sold Sotheby's, London, 9 May 1941; bought by HM Queen Elizabeth.
Royal Collection Trust / © HM Queen Elizabeth II, 2015.
Wax Relief
Isaac Gosset (1713 - 99).
14.4 x 12 cms.

This oval ivory-coloured wax head and shoulders portrait depicts Frederick, Prince of Wales, oldest son of George II. He is shown in profile facing left and wearing armour and the ribbon of the Order of the Garter. It is set on sanded cavetto moulded gilt ground with an oval ebonised wood frame. Vertue described the skill of the ‘Ingenious Isaac Gosset’ as ‘so universally approved on for likeness’ that he dedicated a section in his notebooks to wax carving, which he considered a growing industry. Gosset was from a Huguenot family which had fled to Jersey after the Revocation of the Edict of Nantes. The family later moved to London and Isaac learned wax modelling and frame carving from his uncle Matthew. His wax production was prolific and covered both classical and contemporary figures. Gosset’s renown lay in the fact that, unlike most contemporary wax modellers, he worked from life, and at speed, apparently producing a portrait in under an hour. Gosset also created a secret recipe for tinting his wax to appear like old ivory. His waxes were highly fashionable and were sold at four guineas a piece for an original portrait or one guinea for a copy. Vertue noted that Gosset ‘had the honour of the King sitting to him’ as well as ‘great numbers of persons of Quality and persons of distinction – Learned and others’. Queen Caroline is known to have commissioned various works from Gosset, and may even have granted him a pension. The Picture Closet at Kensington displayed numerous waxes, framed both singly and in groups of up to 16 figures. Some Vertue catalogued as historic and contemporary princes but most remained unidentified. Text adapted from The First Georgians; Art and Monarchy 1714 - 1760, London, 2014.

Possibly from the collection of George III. Presented to the Royal Library by Queen Mary in 1932. Possibly ex-Messrs. Law, Foulsham and Cole, London.
Image and text - Royal Collection Trust / © HM Queen Elizabeth II, 2015.
Prince Frederick Louis
14.8 x 12.1 cms overall.
C. 1750.
by Isaac Gosset 
Ex-Duke of Newscastle collection, no. 381. Purchased by Queen Mary at the Duke of Newcastle's collection sale, Christie's, 8th June 1937, Lot 24 'set of 6 (six) Gossett Portraits of George II, George III, Frederick Prince of Wales, George Prince of Wales, Duke of Cumberland and Duke of Brunswick' at £30.
Royal Collection Trust / © HM Queen Elizabeth II, 2015.

Here would seem as good a place as any on this blog to place some of the later portraits of Prince Frederick Louis
A portrait bust simulating a statue in a niche, of Frederick, wearing a sash; cut from the tenth plate of a series of ten, each of four royal portraits.  1731  Mezzotint
John Faber the Younger
176 x 124 mm
British Museum.
John Faber Jnr (1684 - 1756) at the Green Door in Craven Buildings Drury Lane
after the original by Jeremiah Davison (1695 - 1750).
35.2 x 25 cms platemark.
c . 1730 - 39.
Royal Collection Trust / © HM Queen Elizabeth II, 2015.
John Faber Jnr at the Golden Head Bloomsbury
after Thomas Hudson
32.6 x 22.6 cms platemark.
Dated 1751.
 Mezzotint British Museum.
Prince Frederick Louis
van Loo
c 1742.
with dealer Philip Mould

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