The Tower and Preparation of the Fireworks, with the Balloon, in the Park, August 1st 1814

John Heaviside Clark (c.1771 - 1863)
Matthew Dubourg

Coloured aquatint

published 12 August 1814
  • About the work
    Country: France
    City: Paris
    Place: British Embassy

    This coloured engraving by Matthew Dubourg, made after an original work by John Heaviside Clark, shows the fortress in Green Park which was transformed from the Temple of Discorde into the Temple of Concorde, in honour of the Grand Jubilee celebrations on 1 August 1814. The Prince Regent (later King George IV) declared a Grand Jubilee in celebration of the recent victory over Napoleon and a centenary of Hanoverian rule.

    Sir William Congreve (1772-1828) devised a mechanism to enable the metamorphosis of the Temple of Discorde, which was revealed momentarily amid a cloud of fireworks. Whilst the fireworks display continued, English aeronaut Windham Sadler ascended in his balloon and dropped ‘favours’ and programmes to the crowd below. The print was published by Edward Orme on 12 August 1814.

  • About the artist
    John Heaviside Clark worked as an engraver, book illustrator and a landscape and marine painter. He was born in Scotland, but worked in London from 1802 to 1832. Clark exhibited his works, mainly maritime and landscape subjects, at the Royal Academy from 1812 to 1832. He was known as ‘Waterloo Clark’ as a result of the many sketches he made of the scene immediately after the conclusion of the Battle of Waterloo. Publications illustrated by Clark include ‘Field Sports Etc. of the Native Inhabitants of New South Wales’ (1813) and ‘Practical Illustration of Gilpin’s Day’ (1824). He died in Edinburgh in October 1863. Examples of his work can be found at Glasgow Art Gallery, the National Maritime Museum, Greenwich, and Maidstone Museum.
    Matthew Dubourg was a London-based aquatint engraver of sporting, military and topographical views, made after works by contemporary artists. He often collaborated with the draughtsman and aquatint engraver John Clark. Dubourg exhibited two miniature portraits at the Royal Academy in 1786 and 1797, when his address was 17 Duke Street, off Manchester Square. He later exhibited a ‘Scene near Vauxhall’ at the Academy in 1808, by which time he had moved to 22 East Street, Lambeth.
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  • Details
    The Tower and Preparation of the Fireworks, with the Balloon, in the Park, August 1st 1814
    published 12 August 1814
    Coloured aquatint
    height: 24.50 cm, width: 30.50 cm
    Purchased from the Parker Gallery, December 1978
    GAC number