Frederick Sandys (1829-1904)
‘Sukey' signed and dated 1875
Pastel Chalk drawing
This intriguing drawing is an exciting discovery and relates to at least one and possibly two known works in Sandys’ catalogue raisonee.
The pug in our portrait is clearly very closely related to the pug puppy that appears in the 1873 portrait ‘Kittie’ (Miss Ellen Ellis) in the Walker Art Gallery in Liverpool, except that in our drawing the puppy peeps over a trellised wall, the design of which clearly relates to the wicker chair on which Miss Ellis sits in the larger portrait.
But the date on our drawing is 1875, a year in which Sandys was commissioned to produce a portrait of a pug called ‘Mischief’ belonging to the Pre-Raphaelites’ favourite antique dealer, Murray Marks. This drawing has disappeared, but perhaps the revisiting of his earlier portrait relates to this missing work.
Sandys is widely thought of as one of the great masters of chalk drawing and a significant figure in the later Pre-Raphaelite period.
Betty Hennell (artist's sister)