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Specialist Valuer Ewan Duff talks us through wildlife featured in art.

“Much of the enjoyment of my job is looking through the paintings waiting to be catalogued for our next Pictures, Imagery, and Affordable Art auctions. The feeling of stumbling across something so eye-catching is hard to beat. As I sit here browsing the next batch of art to catalogue, I find something so pleasing to the eye that I’m keen to talk about it to you in this article.

“The painting is magnificent. It’s a vibrant watercolour, around 50cm x 50cm, by the well-respected Hexhamshire wildlife artist Mary Ann Rogers (British, Contemporary). In her timeless, colourful style, she depicts a family of inquisitive guinea fowl. It would look perfect in any style of house, and the subject matter, let alone the portrayal of wildlife, is such a popular genre for buyers today.

“Some people will contest that paintings of wildlife are a dying fashion, but I have to disagree! Over the last year or so, we’ve had some brilliant wildlife works appear in our Picture auctions. In December 2023, we had a wonderful portrayal of African elephants, ‘Baobab’, by the revered artist Anthony Gibbs (b.1951), selling for £1,220. We’ve had numerous illustrations after Steven Townsend (b.1955) of wild animals that have drawn attention from those who attend our viewing days.

“We’ve even had great results for depictions of more domesticated animals, those we call our family. This includes a very charming oil on canvas of an adored St Bernard dog, which made £200, and a much more contemporary screen print of a tabby cat by Michael Leu (b.1950), which made £95 – small in size but what an impression it made.

“More recently, we sold two primitive 18th Century portrayals of a cow and sheep for £800 and a lovely semi-abstract illustration of hens by the Scottish artist Janet Lassen (1924-2008).

“So, with all of this in mind, I would urge you to hunt out your original, beloved wildlife artwork. If you own anything by Mary Ann Rogers, Steven Townsend, Anthony Gibbs, Sue Moffitt, Wright Barker, Fiona Clucas, or anyone else that stands out, then bring it to our saleroom at Junction 36 of the M6 Motorway.

“We are a nation of animal lovers, and I would love to have your wildlife artwork on one of our gallery walls!”

You can keep track of our Paintings, Artworks, and Imagery, including The Gallery of Affordable Art auctions, online.