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Title The Standard Bearer
Collection Cooper Gallery, Barnsley
Artist León Escosura, Ignacio de (Spanish painter; 1834-1901)
Date 1874 (dated)
Signed yes
Description A Spanish genre painter and one of the leading pupils of Gerome, Escosura was a successful Salon painter, especially of genre. In his own country he was closely associated with the influential dealer and founder of the Metropolitan, Samuel P. Avery who championed his work. This small historical study is typical of Escosura's style, which he developed after coming to Paris in the early 1860s. He rarely deviated from historical subjects, gaining success with large figurative works. This may be a study for a larger work, due to the sketchy manner of the painting.
Current Accession Number CP/TR 233
Former Accession Number 62
Inscription front ll 'Leon Escosura 1874'
Subject figure
Measurements 9.5 x 5.5 cm (estimate)
Material oil on panel (hardwood {mahogany})
Acquisition Details Bequeathed by Samuel Joshua Cooper 1913.
Provenance Purchased by Cooper from P. L. Leverand, Tableaux Modernes, 36 Boulevard des Italiens, Paris, 1880.
Publications Cooper Art Gallery Barnsley Catalogue, Barnsley, about 1935; Cooper Art Gallery Catalogue, Barnsley, 1958.

Samuel Joshua Cooper (1830-1913) was born in Barnsley, Yorkshire. He was the son of a prosperous colliery owner and linen manufacturer. On the death of his father he inherited a considerable fortune, leading to his early retirement. He lived primarily at Mount Vernon, near Barnsley but also owned Cowick Hall, near Snaith, where part of his collection was also kept. Between 1862 and 1912 he formed the collection now at the Cooper Art Gallery, Barnsley. Several nineteenth-century French and Italian paintings were acquired by Cooper during his frequent visits to Europe. He bought these either from dealers or from the annual official exhibitions and salons held in these countries. Several works are also known to have come from a local dealer, Edmund Bates in Leeds. Although it is known that he acquired the majority of nineteenth-century works between 1862 and 1891, as these are detailed and recorded in a notebook written by him dated 1891, it is not known when he purchased the old master paintings and, therefore, he may have either inherited them from his father or acquired them after the notebook was written.

The original bequest comprised 275 paintings and drawings, over half of which were continental. There are a number of Dutch old master paintings of a high quality, but it is the French works that predominate in the collection. These are in the main works by academic Salon painters but also include a number of examples by Diaz and Isabey, painters from the Barbizon School. On his death Cooper bequeathed the paintings to a board of trustees with the provision that they establish a public art gallery in Barnsley.

Rights Owner Published by kind permission of the Cooper Gallery Trustees
Author Alastair Smith




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