Ivon Hitchens (British, 1893-1979) The Village Forge (Heyshott Sussex) 45.6 x 50.9 cm. (18 x 20 in.) (Painted in 1926)

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Lot 9AR
Ivon Hitchens
(British, 1893-1979)
The Village Forge (Heyshott Sussex) 45.6 x 50.9 cm. (18 x 20 in.)

Sold for £ 81,500 (US$ 114,789) inc. premium
Ivon Hitchens (British, 1893-1979)
The Village Forge (Heyshott Sussex)
signed 'HITCHENS' (lower left)
oil on canvas
45.6 x 50.9 cm. (18 x 20 in.)
Painted in 1926

Footnotes

  • Provenance
    The Artist, December 1926, from whom purchased by
    Mrs Amber Blanco White, thence by family descent
    Private Collection, U.K.

    The Village Forge (Heyshott Sussex) is a particularly strong example of Hitchens' mid-1920s work, with its energetic brushwork, considered composition and distinctive atmosphere created by the various shades of grey in the sky contrasting with the golden roof tops and brightly lit foreground below.

    Painted in 1926 and purchased by the current owner's late grandmother directly from Hitchens, the painting has never been exhibited or published. A year earlier, in December 1925, Hitchens enjoyed his first one-man exhibition at the Mayor Gallery on Sackville Street, and it was the artist's friend, W.G. Constable, who wrote a foreword for the catalogue:
    'Today, in reaction from nineteenth century pre-occupation with dramatic content, or with representation of natural appearance, the younger painters are chiefly interested in problems of design – of bringing colour and form into harmonious and rhythmical relation. So the main purpose which runs through Mr. Ivon Hitchens' work, is to express the inner harmony and rhythm which he feels, rather than sees, running through and uniting any group of forms; to strip, as it were, the veil of the familiar from the unfamiliar through the medium of his own temperament.' (Peter Khoroche, Ivon Hitchens, André Deutsch, London, 1990, p.25).

    This passage also relates well to the present lot with its rhythmic forms of the central elm tree uniting those of the impending squall of the clouds behind. Even the brushstrokes of the forge's roof complement those used to describe the foliage and thus the 'inner harmony' of this accomplished picture is achieved.

    We are grateful to Peter Khoroche for his assistance in cataloguing this lot.
Contacts
Ivon Hitchens (British, 1893-1979) The Village Forge (Heyshott Sussex) 45.6 x 50.9 cm. (18 x 20 in.) (Painted in 1926)
Ivon Hitchens (British, 1893-1979) The Village Forge (Heyshott Sussex) 45.6 x 50.9 cm. (18 x 20 in.) (Painted in 1926)
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