Deception Island, South Shetland Islands, Southern Ocean
This watercolour is based on sketches made by Jackson in the West Indies during his trip there in 1827 and was his first exhibited West Indies view in 1828. Jackson was one of the best known artists of the Bristol School. He was born in Bristol, the son of a merchant and worked for his father until 1820 when he became a professional artist. He became a well known drawing teacher in Bristol and travelled extensively in Britain.
Boats to the West Indies from Bristol would have been frequent as the city was a trading centre at the time. Little is known of which islands Jackson visited but his exhibited works suggest he certainly visited Trinidad, Tobago and St. Vincent and a Jamaican view is in Bristol City Art Gallery. The present watercolour is reminiscent of parts of Dominica but is clearly a composition of the scenery he saw there. His West Indian views are rare as are watercolours by him on this scale. The only comparable works, which are the same size, are in Bristol City Art Gallery (see The Great Age of British Watercolours 1750-1850, exhibition catalogue, 1993, nos.189 and 190, pls.294 and 302). Watercolour over pencil heightened with bodycolour and stopping out.
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