Londres 1806 – 1889
A View of Amsterdam by Sunset
Signed and dated lower left W. Wyld à sa sœur (illisible) 1836 and situated Amsterdam lower right.
122 x 181 mm – 4 13/16 x 7 1/8 in.
Of British origin, Wyld and his family had settled in France in his childhood. He first worked in diplomacy, then in the wine business while learning to draw in his free time, with the watercolorist François Louis Thomas Francia. During a trip to Alger, Wyld met Horace Vernet who encouraged him to seriously consider dedicating to painting and invited him to Rome.
After an extensive tour in Italy with Émile-Aubert Lessore, he went to Paris where he settled permanently and received many commissions on Orientalist and Venetian themes. The painting Venice in the Rising Sun he exhibited at the 1839 Salon was widely lauded and received a gold medal. He became closer of the Romantic painters such as Ary Scheffer and Paul Delaroche, visited Brittany and began to exhibit in Great Britain from 1848 onwards at the Royal Academy and at the New Water-Colour Society. In 1879, he became a member of the Royal Institute of Painters in Watercolour. Although he also painted in oil, it is in watercolor that he made numerous views of all the cities he visited during his many trips to Europe. This technique owned him many great mundane and artistic successes, the brightest of all certainly being invited by Queen Victoria to paint views of her favorite residence, Balmoral, in September 1852.
This work bears testimony of a trip to the Netherlands in 1836. Wyld painted in watercolor the same view at a different time of day and from a little further away (Fig. 1; Christie’s London South Kensington, 9 December 2010, lot 1195). The beauty of the glowing sky and the delicacy of the vegetation demonstrate his technical mastery, but also his sensibility as a landscape painter and traveler.
Condition report: Perfect condition. Laid down on cardboard.