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John Atkinson Grimshaw painting of Heath Street in Hampstead up for auction at Christie’s

Heath Street, Hampstead by John Atkinson Grimshaw. Picture: Christie's Images Ltd. Heath Street, Hampstead by John Atkinson Grimshaw. Picture: Christie's Images Ltd.

Friday, December 13, 2013
2:00 PM

A Victorian painting of a Hampstead street bathed in moonlight has been put up for sale at auction after years in the hands of a private collector.

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The oil painting, Heath Street, Hampstead by John Atkinson Grimshaw, is an example of the moonlit landscape works the artist is best known for.

It is valued at £150,000-£200,000 – about average for a Grimshaw painting. The most paid for one of his works is £600,000.

The artist mostly painted northern landscapes but he came down to London in the 1880s. He visited and painted Hampstead around seven or eight times.

Grimshaw shared a studio in Chelsea with the American painter James Whistler, who is also well known for his nocturnes.

Brandon Lindberg, head of the Victorian department at auction house Christie’s, where the work will go on sale, said the painting of Heath Street was very similar to one hanging in Tate Britain.

“[Grimshaw] was drawn to the most picturesque places in London,” he said. “He was best known for his moonlight pictures and this is an archetypal example of one of those.”

The work will be auctioned at 2.30pm today (Thursday) at Christie’s in King Street, St James’s.

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