East Anglian View auction at Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk took place yesterday (2.12.10) and fetched an impressive total of £367,000. Three of the top five lots of the day were paintings by Campbell Archibald Mellon (1878-1955), all featuring the picturesque seaside town of Gorleston. August Bank Holiday, Gorleston fetched £28,800, while Crowded beach, Gorleston, with boating pond to the foreground sold for £18,000 and Gorleston Beach made £16,800.
After serving in the First World War Mellon moved to the town of Gorleston in Norfolk and he became well known for these seaside scenes with a mass of clearly defined people. He loved to paint the beach at Gorleston whilst looking into the sun and the play of light on the sand fascinated him. It was when he moved to Norfolk that he met and studied under Sir John Arnesby Brown, whose painting entitled The River Bank fetched an impressive £20,400 at yesterdays auction. Arnesby Brown was popular for his paintings of landscape and pastoral subjects in which he depicts a timeless naturalism and tranquil contemplative scenes of the marshes and broads of East Anglia. Two other works of his also fetched good prices in the auction - Beside the Cut, Haddiscoe sold for £7,920 and Cattle on a track for £7,800.
Sir John Arnesby Brown was born at Ruddington, Nottingham in 1866 but spent the years after the First World War alternating between Haddiscoe in Norfolk and St. Ives before taking a house in Chelsea. In 1935 Norwich Castle Museum held a retrospective of his work and this was followed by a Knighthood in 1938.
A number of interesting local clocks sold well including an 18th century black lacquer tavern clock, by Moore of Ipswich a £3,960 and another by Thomas Green of Baldock also at £3,960. An Ipswich black lacquer longcase clock fetched £1,380 and a Bury St Edmunds blue lacquer longcase clock made £1,440.
Michael Steel, Director of Bonhams Bury St Edmunds comments, Yesterdays sale results illustrate the popularity of the rich artistic history of this part of the world and we were pleased with the significant prices achieved.