Saturday, 31 March 2018
Adolphe Martial Potémont’s etching, “Hêtres”, c1874
Adolphe Martial Potémont (aka Adolphe Martial; Adolphe Théodore Jules Martial Potémont) (1828–1883)
“Hêtres” (Beeches), titled in pencil below image borderline, c1874–75 (?), artist’s proof signed in pencil (by the artist?), most likely printed and published by Alfred Cadart (1828–75).
Etching on cream laid paper (2.8 cm chainlines) with “Arches” watermark
Size: (sheet) 59.9 x 42 cm; (plate) 43.4 x 27.4 cm; (image borderline) 40.4 x 25.8 cm
Signed in the plate with the artist’s initials/monogram below the image borderline: (centre) “APM.”
Inscribed in pencil below the image borderline: “…[H?] êtres — A Martial Portémont —Eau-forté / jeu …[premier?]”
Trial/Artist’s proof state
Condition: richly-inked proof impression with generous margins, pencil annotated and in superb condition (i.e. there are no tears, holes, folds, abrasions, stains or foxing, but there are very minor signs of handling).
I am selling this exceptionally large and rare pencil signed (by the artist?) proof for the total cost of AU$182 (currently US$139.83/EUR113.43/GBP99.76 at the time of posting this print) including postage and handling to anywhere in the world.
If you are interested in purchasing this forest scene of Beech trees exemplifying the spirit of the Barbizon School, please contact me (firstname.lastname@example.org) and I will send you a PayPal invoice to make the payment easy.
This print has been sold
I have never seen another copy of this etching in any of the major museums or on the market place. This is disappointing as the shortfall in trustworthy information about it means that I have relied upon matching similar prints by the artist to attribute a date for its execution. Moreover, I have relied upon the pencil inscription for the print's title—hopefully my reading of the written title is correct as the first letter is not easily deciphered. In short, forgive me if there are errors in my documentation. One thing is certain: this is very large and fully resolved etching that I have no doubt the artist would have valued as one of his masterworks simply because it is so beautiful. This is especially true regarding the way that the artist has employed subtle tonal transitions and a rich vocabulary of different strokes moulded to describe the wide range of textures that he observed in the forest.