Raleigh, Charles Sidney (1830-1925) USA (1)

Catégorie : PEINTRES

RaleighCSVBorn in Gloucester, England in 1830, Raleigh was a sailor from boyhood, running away to sea at age ten aboard a British naval vessel commanded by his uncle. He served in the American navy during the Mexican war and later served as a merchant seaman. In 1877 he settled in New Bedford, Massachusetts and was listed as a marine painter.

A self taught artist, he specialized in colorful ship portraits in the folk art tradition. To supplement his income, he also became a decorator and house painter. But his years at sea helped him to create attractive marine paintings that today grace important collections of marine art nationwide. The New Bedford Whaling Museum displays no less than 22 of his works.

Enjoying a long and productive life, Raleigh died at the age of 95 in Bourne, Massachusetts, leaving a legacy for future generations of ship portraits showing the wind ships of his youth with great character and dignity.

Volunteer & Thistle – 1887 America’s Cup


The Raleigh’s masterpiece is this 1887 painting depicting the start of the 1887 America’s Cup race between the New York Yacht Club’s white-hulled Volunteer and the Royal Clyde Yacht Club’s black-hulled challenger, Thistle, in Volunteer & Thistle – 1887 America’s Cup. The same American syndicate from Boston won the America’s Cup in three consecutive years: 1885 ( Puritan ), 1886 (Mayflower) and 1887 (Volunteer). This was the only time in history when one syndicate has accomplished this feat. It appears that Raleigh was commissioned to e xecute this painting in the third year, 1887, and that the work was then to be presented to the syndicate at a reception at Faneuil Hall, Boston, on September 30, 1887. The 30 x 44 inch work is signed and dated lower left , in large block letters, “C.S. R aleigh 1887.”

Raleigh’s harbor is packed with vessels, and each of those vessels is filled with spectators. To the left of Volunteer , and cutting across the picture plane at the same angle, is the Fall River Line steamboat Pilgrim , a large steam side- wh eeler, laden with red, white and blue flags, as well as the New York Yacht Club, Royal Yacht Squadron and Eastern Yacht Club burgees and many spectators. To her left, we see a three -masted square- rigged sailing vessel at full sail heading towards the action. Just to the right of Volunteer , in the center of the canvas, is a steel-hulled steam sail vessel with another steamer behind Thistle. Gathered on the right-hand side of the canvas, in the distance, are a white-hulled excursion boat (similar to Pilgrim), a steam tug, the Sandy Hook Lightship and several small craft. In the foreground, just in front of Volunteer, a school of dolphins leap from the waves as if mimicking the excitement of the spectators.