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Sunday, August 23, 2015, Bhadra 8, 1422 BS, Zilqad 7, 1436 Hijr

Britain fights to keep first Niagara Falls watercolor
Published :Sunday, 23 August, 2015,  Time : 12:00 AM  View Count : 13

An East View of the Great Cataract of Niagara, the first eyewitness painting of the landmark, was sold to a foreign buyer in April 1 at Christie's for $237,000 has now been placed under a temporary export bar, in the hope a UK buyer match the £151,800 asking price.
Culture Minister Ed Vaizey said the artwork by British military artist Captain Thomas Davies helped demonstrate "Britain's global role in the 18th century".
Captain Davies' painting was the first accurate, on site painting of the landmark straddling the US and Canadian border and the earliest to depict Niagara's rainbow, which is now one of the most recognisable views in the world.
A highly-regarded military artist and collector trained in landscape painting, Davies completed the work during one of his four tours of duty in North America.
Until then, much less realistic portrayals of Niagara Falls were created by artists who had not been there, based on a written description by Father Louis Hennepin, the European who discovered the falls in 1678.
"Most of his work has already left these shores," said Christopher Wright, a member of the committee that advises the government on art and objects of cultural interest.
"Davies produced three views of Niagara. An East View of the Falls, arguably the most important of the three, is the only one now remaining in this country," said Wright.
The watercolour previously belonged to late collector Peter Winkworth a Canadian, who had built an extensive collection of early British works on his homeland before his death in 2005.
The decision on the watercolour's export licence application has been deferred until 18 November, but could be extended until February 2016 if a serious buyer is found.    ?USA Today

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