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December 28 , 2010

Thomas Girtin: 80 Watercolours and Drawings


Thomas Girtin (1775 – 1802) was an English painter and etcher. A friend and rival of J. M. W. Turner, Girtin played a key role in establishing watercolour as a reputable art form. Girtin's early landscapes are akin to 18th-century topographical sketches, but in later years he developed a bolder, more spacious, romantic style, which had a lasting influence on English painting. The scenery of the north encouraged him to create a new watercolour palette of warm browns, slate greys, indigo and purple. He abandoned the practice of undershadowing in grey wash and then adding pastel patches of colour, in favour of broad washes of strong colour, and experimented with the use of pen, brown ink and varnish to add richer tones.

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