Hunt, Alfred William (1830-96; English)
Moonrise, near Bamborough Castle
Oil on canvas, c. 76.2 x 121.9 cm
Purchased, 1873 (advice of J.R.Herbert)
Unidentified; present location unknown 

In NGV 1894, this work was catalogued with an accompanying quote from Sir Walter Scott regarding “proud Bamborough,” and noted as then on loan to the Bendigo Art Gallery. It was still listed as part of the NGV collection in 1943.

Hunt was a respected landscapist inspired by Turner in particular; his works are held in the Tate Gallery and elsewhere, and a major survey exhibition of his work was held at the Yale Center for British Art in 2004. Several of his extant watercolours show the dramatic Northumbrian castle now known as Bamburgh; and a famous Turner watercolour of the site (long thought lost) reappeared at auction late in 2007.

[comparative photo shown below: Hunt’s Bamburgh Castle at Low Tide: watercolour auctioned by Christie’s, 13 July 2016]


AR 1873, p.69; NGV 1875, p.19; NGV 1894, p.98 (IV.McArthur Gallery, no.77); NGV 1905, p.87 (III.McArthur Gallery, no.19; size given as  30 x 48 inches) [£262/10] 

NGV 1894, quoting from Scott’s Marmion, catalogues the painting as Bamborough Castle, Northumberland, and measuring 55” x 30”; cf.NGV 1943, cat.307

For the artist, see Bénézit 7, p.434 (listing the present work); AKL 75 (2012), pp.510-11;; and Christopher Newall & others, The Poetry of Truth: Alfred William Hunt and the Art of Landscape, New Haven: Yale Center for British Art, 2004. For other examples, see e.g. (Christie’s, London, 13 July 2016, lot 168: watercolour reproduced here); Christie’s Sale 6289, 7 April 2000, lots 32-33 (watercolours by Hunt; details and reproductions available online); and “A Turner masterpiece for Sotheby’s auction”, The Telegraph, 16 Nov.2007: