Mediterranean Coast Scene

  • About the work
    Location
    Country: Czech Republic
    City: Prague
    Place: British Embassy

    This is one of a number of unidentified Mediterranean coastal scenes, probably not based on a single location, by artist Nicholas Pocock. It was most likely executed many years after Pocock went to the Mediterranean, and drawn from sketches made in a log book, which he kept when in command of the merchant ship, the ‘Betsey’. On the ‘Betsey’, Pocock undertook an eventful voyage to the Mediterranean in 1770, during which he experienced very rough weather and lost one of his crew.

    This painting is one of several examples of Pocock’s work in oils. Lacking any formal training, he acquired a remarkable control of the technical aspects of oil painting, although he was more prolific as a watercolour painter.

  • About the artist
    Nicholas Pocock was born in Bristol; the son of a merchant. He went to sea at a young age and commanded ships belonging to Richard Champion, the first producer of Bristol porcelain. In 1780 he sent a picture to the Royal Academy too late to be included in the exhibition. Two years later, two landscapes and two marine paintings by Pocock were accepted by the Academy and thereafter he exhibited there every year until 1812. In 1789 Pocock moved to London, where he quickly won popularity with naval clients, recording their actions at sea. He briefly returned to sea with the Fleet in 1794. From then, Pocock found employment recording actions of the French Wars. He also produced six paintings illustrating ‘The Life of Nelson’ (published in 1809).
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  • Details
    Title
    Mediterranean Coast Scene
    Date
    1802
    Medium
    Oil on canvas
    Dimensions
    height: 96.00 cm, width: 131.00 cm
    Acquisition
    Purchased from Frank T Sabin, June 1963
    Inscription
    sdbr
    Provenance
    With Sabin Gallery; from whom purchased by the Ministry of Works in June 1963
    GAC number
    6130