Félix Buhot, etching, Westminster Bridge


Westminster Bridge orWestminster Clock Tower

Bourcard-Goodfriend 156

etching, aquatint, roulette, and drypoint, 1884, printed in two colors (black for the subject, and bistre for the "symphonic margins"), on medium-heavy toned Holland laid paper, with the Van Gelder watermark, the 6th or 7th state (of 8) following Goodfriend, a fine atmospheric impression with plate tone, with good margins, deckle edges below and right, some uniform light-staining from an old mount, traces of hinges and some soiling on the reverse, otherwise in very good condition

P. 286x397mm., S. 367x446mm.

Buhot developed a personal sensitivity to the handling of light and atmosphere that translated well into incessant experimentation with a whole range of graphic techniques: after meticulous preparation, he painstakingly reworked his plates in numerous states (building up the image so to speak), varied their inking, and tried out different papers so as to obtain the effects desired.

This is indeed a Whistlerian idea, and relates clearly to what Goodfriend calls his "monotypist" approach to printmaking, wherein each individual impression is a work unto itself.

The present etching, one of his best known, exemplifies these preoccupations. Along with its pendant piece, Westminster Palace, it was exhibited at the Champ-de-Mars for the Exposition Universelle in 1889, where it was highly acclaimed.