Percy Drake Brookshaw (1907 - 1993)

Boat Race Sold

Gouache on paper.
Signed DRAKE BROOKSHAW at the lower left.
257 x 385 mm. (10 1/8 x 15 1/8 in.) [image]
315 x 435 mm. (12 3/8 x 17 1/8 in.) [sheet]


The present sheet is likely to have been a design for a poster, possibly for the Henley Royal Regatta or the University Boat Race. The artist here depicts the boat race from overhead, emphasizing in particular the decorative effect of the action of the oars and the ripples caused by them in the water. Brookshaw produced a number of posters of the annual University Boat Race for the London Underground in the 1920’s and 1930’s, two examples of which - for the Boat Race in 1928 and 1937 - are today in the collection of the London Transport Museum.

The first London Underground poster advertising the annual Oxford and Cambridge University Boat Race was produced in 1911. Although the earliest examples were fairly traditional in appearance, this changed in later years. As one scholar has written, ‘Throughout the 1920’s, the London Underground continued to distribute posters advertising the Boat Race, many of which were now produced by more innovative and modernist-inspired artists brought in under the leadership of Frank Pick. Among these were Charles Paine and Percy Drake Brookshaw, both of whom produced posters featuring boats seen from an aerial perspective and with a strong emphasis on the geometrical forms made by the boats as they sped through the water.’

The family of the artist, and thence by descent.


Boat Race


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