The Beacon, Exmouth
Price: 1,150.00 AUD
1830. Lithograph, 150 x 245 mm., Very rare indeed: an example of the work being done by Conrad Martens before he sailed on the Beagle. Any art relating to this early part of his career is most uncommon. Conrad Martens (1801-1878), perhaps the best known of all colonial artists, arrived in Sydney in 1835 after working his way around the world, including a year's appointment as artist on the hydrographical survey voyage of the Beagle, during which his shipmate was Charles Darwin. Martens had been born in London in 1801 but moved with his family to Exmouth in Devon in 1822. The view shows the temple by the shore at the Beacon, in the centre of Exmouth. This is thought to be the second earliest print after any work by Martens: the actual lithograph was drawn on stone "F. Martens", thought to be Frederick Martens, a German-born engraver in aquatint and likely a relative of Conrad. Michael Organ, who has made a study of Martens, records in his "Conrad Martens' Prints" (online) that the Dixson library holds an impression of this view with the imprint "Printed by Engelmann, Graf, Coindet & Co." which is not present on this example. Hordern House has never before handled a copy of this lithograph by Martens, an outstanding colonial artist. Very good.