Bell, Joseph J. , In the Vale of the Tummel: Perthshire. Signed, “Jos. J. Bell” in the lower left-hand corner of the painting and titled on the verso by the painter. A gouache and watercolor on paper, measuring 27.2 cm x 37.5 cm, mounted on a slightly larger sheet of paper. A rich evocation of the verdant Vale of the Tummel, with forest on the left side and a misty crag in the background, a lone human figure, centered with a jot of crimson, possibly playing the bagpipes, stands out as a symbolic figure, alone, yet one with Nature. The condition is very good. The lower right-hand corner or the paper mount is slightly bent, but the painting is undamaged. There are traces of mounting and instructions to a framer in pencil on the verso.
Joseph J. Bell was a Scottish artist, active 1864 – 1887. Bell worked principally in Lasswade, Midlothian, nine miles south of Edinburgh. His works are found in Peebles at the Tweeddale Museum. See Christopher Wright, British and Irish paintings in Public Collections, p. 96.
Sold with two autograph letters signed by Joseph J. Bell:
21 May 1904, 2 pages, bi-folium, to Rev. Herbert B. Workman, a character reference for Alan W.C. Menzies, an applicant for post of lecturer at the Wesleyan Training College, Joseph John Bell had known Menzies since childhood.
22 May 1904, 3 pages, bi-folium, to Alan W.C. Menzies, a cover letter for an exact handwritten copy of a character reference dated May 21, 1904, with the return address of Broomie Knowe, Lasswade, with the news of Annie Besant’s lectures in Edinburgh on June 7 and 8, and praise for “the glorious beach at Aberdeen.”
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