RICHARD COOPER JNR (1740-1822)

~ ITALIAN LANDSCAPES ~

John Downman (1750-1784) Portrait of Richard Cooper Jnr. Chalk and stump. 1777. (Fitzwilliam Museum)

Cooper Jnr was born in Edinburgh and trained with his father, the engraver Richard Cooper Snr (1701-1764). He moved to London in 1761 but by 1767 was on the Continent; first in France (Paris), then Spain and Portugal. He was in Italy by 1771 and stayed until late 1775.

Cooper spent most of his time in Rome and Naples, but travelled as far South as Paestum (Cf. no.37), and as far North as Venice. In Italy his circle included Joseph Wright of Derby (1734-1797), John Downman (1750-1784), George Romney (1734-1802), Ozias Humphry (1742-1810), Mauritius Lowe (1746-1793), and fellow Scots, John Brown (1752-1787), Jacob More (1740-1793) and Alexander Runciman (1736-1785). These men all worked, to a lesser or greater extent, under the influence of the Swiss painter Henrich Fuseli (1741-1825). Bold, dramatic works – mainly drawings – broadly treated in monochrome washes, were the order of the day. In Landscape, Veduti of famous sites (Eg. nos. 1, 8, 25) and Capricci (Eg. nos. 2, 15, 28) were still the most fashionable Modes. But as the group below demonstrates, Cooper was one of those artists becoming increasingly concerned with conveying a more genuine ‘sense of place’ (Eg. nos. 14, 16 32). Drawings of narrow lanes shaded from raking southern light, pine trees glimpsed over ancient walls, the crumbling plaster and masonary of domestic buildings, are all reminiscent of the more familiar works of Thomas Jones (1742-1803) and Francis Towne (1739-1816), who arrived in Italy after Cooper left, and look towards the generations of Romantic landscape painters that would ‘re-discover’ Italy in the nineteenth-century.

 

A View Taken in the Gardens of the Villa Negroni at Rome. Etching & aquatint. 1778/79.

Cooper’s intention in going abroad was to make copy drawings from Old Master paintings so he could publish engravings. But this grand scheme of prints did not emerge. The twelve large Italian Landscapes he published in aquatint between 1778 and 1779 were the main body of work to come from the material he gathered on his travels. These prints – a technical tour-de-force in a medium that was still in its infancy – established his reputation as a Landscape Draughtsman and Printmaker, not Copy Engraver. He exhibited landscapes at the Royal Academy annually from 1788 to 1808, and taught drawing at Eton College and to the Royal Princesses. The Series of landcape prints he published in soft-ground etching (1799/1800), and lithography (1802-1806) are, like these Italian Landscapes of the 1770s, a demonstration of Cooper’s great flair for, and knowledge of, Landscape Composition.


Provenance
‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. Exhibited: Legacy: Richard Cooper Jnr (1740-1822) and the Artist’s Album. UCL Art Museum, 2017.

Condition
These have all been in an album since the early nineteenth-century so are entirely unfaded. They are working drawings. Cooper kept them with him all his life; many travelled back with him from Italy. We have been careful to leave them as they were when compiled into the album – free from a conservator’s hand – with inevitable signs of age and studio use.


  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    ‘At Naples’. Chalk, brush and monochrome wash. c.1771-1775. Inscribed. Signed ‘R Cooper d’ in pencil. Laid paper. Provenance: ‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. 8.5×12 inches.
    £1,750
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    ‘At Rome’; buildings in the Forum with the Temple of Castor and Pollux in the background. Pencil, brush, ink and monochrome wash. c. 1771-1775. Inscribed. Signed ‘R Cooper-dt’ in ink and ‘R Cooper dt’ in pencil. Laid paper. Provenance: ‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. 9×12.5 inches.
    £1,250
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    ‘At Rome’; walls of the Villa Borghese. Pen, brush, ink and monochrome wash. c.1771-1775. Inscribed. Signed ‘Ric Cooper dt’ in ink. Laid paper. Provenance: ‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. 8.47×11.62 inches.
    £1,250
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    ‘Convent at Rome’. Pencil. c.1771-1775. Inscribed. Signed ‘R Cooper dt’ in pencil.Provenance: ‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. 7.5×10 inches.
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    ‘Dwelling houses at Naples’. Pencil, brush and monochrome wash. c.1771-1775. Inscribed. Signed ‘R Cooper dt’ in pencil. Laid paper. Provenance: ‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. 7.5×9.5 inches.
    £675
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    ‘Mount Vesuvius’. Pen, brush and ink. c.1771-1775. Inscribed. Signed ‘R Cooper in ink’. Laid paper. Provenance: ‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. 7.5×12.5 inches.
    £2,500
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    ‘Mount Vesuvius’. Pen, ink, brush and monochrome wash. c.1771-1775. Inscribed. Signed ‘Ric Cooper dt’ in pencil. Provenance: ‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. 8×12 inches.
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    ‘Near the Villa Borghese – Rome’. Pen, brush, ink and monochrome wash. c.1771-1775. Inscribed. Signed ‘R Cooper d’ in pen (LR). Provenance: ‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. 7.5×10 inches.
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    ‘One of the Temples – at Pestum – Naples’ (sic). Pencil. c.1771-1775. Inscribed. Signed in pencil ‘R Cooper d’. Laid paper. 7.25×10.25 inches.
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    ‘Part of Dioclesians Baths – Rome’ (sic). Pencil, brush and monochrome wash. c.1771-1775. Inscribed. Signed ‘R Cooper dt’ in pencil. Provenance: ‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. 7.5×10.5 inches.
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    ‘Raphael’s Villa / Rome’. Pencil. c.1771-1775. Inscribed and signed ‘R Cooper d’ in pencil.Provenance: ‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. 8×11 inches.
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    ‘Ruins at Rome’. Pencil, brush and monochrome wash. c.1780. Inscribed and signed ‘R Cooper d’ in pencil. Laid paper. Provenance: ‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. 9.5×12.5 inches.
    £2,000
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    ‘Ruins at Rome’; a capriccio. Pencil, brush and monochrome wash. c.1771-1775. Inscribed. Signed ‘Ric Cooper dt’ in pencil. Provenance: ‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. 9.5×14.25 inches.
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    ‘The Cocagna at Naples / Cruel Amusement – Yearly’. Pencil. c.1771-1775. Inscribed. Signed ‘Ric Cooper d’ in pencil. Laid paper, applied at the corners to a support sheet of laid paper. Inscribed: ‘A most cruel and barbarous amusement. They nail up Geese and other Poultry alive by the wings / spread out so for some days, exposed to the hot sun + then the mob are allowed to rush + seize / what they can – _ – wood and everything goes to the public, and fighting among them’. Provenance: ‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. 8×10.5 inches.
    £2,500
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    ‘View in Rome’; S. Giovanni e Paolo and the Clivus Scauri. Pencil, brush and monochrome wash. c.1771-1775. Inscribed and signed ‘R Cooper d’ in pencil. Laid paper. Provenance: ‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. 9.5×12.5 inches.
    £1,750
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    ‘Wall of Rome’. Pencil and monochrome wash. c. 1771-1775. Inscribed. Signed ‘R Cooper’ in pencil. Laid paper. Provenance: ‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. 5×7.5 inches.
    £350
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    Cave tourists. Pencil, brush and ink. c.1771-1775. Provenance: ‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. 16×19.5 inches.
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    Classical capriccio. Pen, brush and ink. c.1780. Signed ‘R Cooper d’. Laid paper. Provenance: ‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. 3×5 inches.
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    Classical capriccio. Pen, brush and ink. c.1780. Signed ‘Richard Cooper ‘ in ink. Verso: Extensively inscribed with notes. Possibly a ‘to do’ list. Laid paper. Provenance: ‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. 2.5×11.25 inches.
    £575
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    Classical capriccio. Pencil, brush and ink. c.1780. Signed ‘RC’ in ink. Provenance: ‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. 5×7.5 inches.
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    Forum, Rome; The Arch of Septimius Severus. Pencil. c.1771-1775. Incorrectly inscribed ‘Trajan’s Arch at Rome’. Signed ‘R Cooper’ in pencil. Provenance: ‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. 8.5×12 inches.
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    Italian capriccio and monument. Pen, brush and ink. c.1780. Signed ‘RC’ in ink. Laid paper. Provenance: ‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. 4.75×7.75 inches.
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    Italian Capriccio. Chalk. c.1780. Signed ‘R Cooper’ in pencil. Drawn on the reverse of part of a Malt Stock Duty document for the period 23rd June 1725-23rd June 1726. Laid paper. Provenance: ‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. 7.5×11.5 inches.
    £775
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    Italian capriccio. Pen, brush and ink. c.1780. Signed ‘RC’ in ink. Laid paper. Provenance: ‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. 3×4.75 inches.
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    Italian capriccio. Pen, brush and ink. c.1780. Signed ‘RCdt’ in ink. Wove paper. Provenance: ‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. 4×7.5 inches.
    £575
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    Italian capriccio. Pencil brush and ink. c.1780. Laid paper. Provenance: ‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. 4.25×7 inches.
    £575
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    Italian capriccio. Pen, brush and ink. c.1780. Signed ‘RC’ in ink. Laid paper. Provenance: ‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. 4×9.25 inches.
    £575
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    Italian capriccio. Pen, brush and ink. Signed ‘R Cooper’ in ink (LR). Laid paper. Provenance: ‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. 7.5×10.5 inches.
    £675
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    Italian capriccio. Pen, brush and ink. c.1780. Signed ‘RC.d’ in ink. Laid paper. Provenance: ‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. 5.25×8.5 inches.
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    Italian capriccio. Pen, brush and ink. c.1780. Signed ‘R Cooper d’ in ink. Provenance: ‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. 7.25×9.25 inches.
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    Italian Capriccio. Pencil, brush and ink. c.1780. Signed ‘R Cooper dt’ in ink. Provenance: ‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. 7.25×9.25 inches.
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    Italian capriccio. Pen, brush ink and monochrome wash. c.1780. Signed ‘R. Cooper invt’ in ink. Provenance: ‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. 4×3.5 inches.
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    Italian capriccio. Pen, brush and ink. c.1780. Signed ‘ RC’ in ink. Provenance: ‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. 3.25×4 inches.
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    Italian landscape and buildings, possibly a view in Rome. Pen, brush and ink. c.1780. Signed ‘R Cooper d’ in ink. Provenance: ‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. 4×8 inches.
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    Italian landscape, possiblby a capriccio. c.1780. Pen, brush and ink. Signed ‘RC d’ in ink. Wove paper 2.25×3.5 inches.
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    Italian landscape, possible a capriccio. Pen, brush and ink. c.1780. Signed RC in ink. Laid paper. Provenance: ‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. 3×4.75 inches.
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    Italy: ‘Near Naples – called Scuola di Virgilio’. Pencil. c.1771-1775. Inscribed. Signed ‘Rcd’ in pencil. Provenance: ‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. 8×10.5 inches.
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    Rome; ‘Gardens in the Villa Ludovisi’. Pencil, brush and monochrome wash. c.1771-1775. Inscribed. Signed ‘R Cooper’ in pencil. Provenance: ‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. 7.5×5 inches.
  • Cooper Jnr, Richard (1740 – 1822)
    Rome; ‘Part of St Peter’s Church’. Pencil, pen and ink. Probably drawn wth an optical device like a Camera Obscura. c.1771-1775. Inscribed. Signed ‘R. C: d Rom(e)’ in pencil (LR). Laid paper. Provenance: ‘The Cooper Album’, a bound collection of landscape drawings by Cooper Jnr, probably compiled by a family member late in the artist’s life, or perhaps soon after his death. 7×8 inches.
    £875