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Landscape with a goatherd and goats (after Claude)



John Constable


11 Jun 1776 – 01 Apr 1837

Artist profile

Alternate image of Landscape with a goatherd and goats (after Claude) by John Constable
Alternate image of Landscape with a goatherd and goats (after Claude) by John Constable
  • Details

    Other Title
    Landscape with goatherd and goats
    Media category
    Materials used
    oil on canvas
    53.3 x 44.5 cm stretcher/ canvas; 65.0 x 58.5 x 10.0 cm frame
    Signature & date

    Not signed. Not dated.

    Gift of the National Art Collections Fund 1961
    Grand Courts
    Accession number

    Reproduction requests

    Artist information
    John Constable

    Artist profile

    Works in the collection


  • About

    The faithful copying of works of art, usually famous ones, by earlier masters was accepted practice for apprentice painters from the Renaissance to the nineteenth century. Considered a vital part of visual education, it often implied homage as well. This is the case with John Constable's loving replication of Claude's 'Landscape with a goatherd and goats'. The English painter took pains to evoke the spirit of his French original, not simply to imitate its surface appearance. Thus the Constable could not be mistaken for the Claude despite adhering to it in every important respect of colouring and composition. The result is an imaginative effort fascinating on its own terms. Constable wrote to his wife, Maria, at the time, 'I have a little Claude in hand, a Grove scene of great beauty and I wish to make a nice copy from it to be useful to me as long as I live... It contains all that I wish to do in landscape'. Seldom in art history has a prophecy of such modesty proven so extravagantly true: Constable went on to redefine the landscape conventions of his period.

    AGNSW Handbook, 1999.

  • Exhibition history

    Shown in 7 exhibitions

  • Bibliography

    Referenced in 20 publications

  • Provenance

    Clifford Constable, England, This work remained in Constable's possession until his death in 1837. It passed to his daughter Isabel Constable (1822-88) and by descent to her nephew Clifford Constable, being sold with his collection at Christie's London, 23 May 1894, lot no. 60.

    P & D Colnaghi and Co, London/England, Purchased at Christie's London, 23 June 1894 from Clifford Constable's sale lot no.60

    Collector unknown, Anon. sale sold Christie's London, 1 February 1924, lot no. 10

    Pawsey & Payne, London/England, [dealer] Purchased from Christie's London, 1 February 1924, lot no.10

    Appleby's, London/England, [dealer] Purchased by the National Art Collections Fund

    National Art Collections Fund, London/England, Gift of the National Art Collections Fund 1961

Other works by John Constable