Artist Thomas Gainsborough, English, 1727-1788
  • Shrimpers
Date ca. between 1785 and 1789
Medium black chalk and gray wash on light tan laid paper
Dimensions Sheet: 10 3/4 × 14 1/2 inches (27.3 × 36.8 cm)
Framed: 19 × 22 1/2 × 1 5/8 inches (48.3 × 57.2 × 4.1 cm)
Credit Line Founders Society Purchase, William H. Murphy Fund
Accession Number 34.113
Department Prints, Drawings & Photographs
Not On View
Marks Stamp, in brown, lower right: Esdaile (Lugt 2617)
Inscriptions Inscribed, in brown crayon, lower conter of mount: THE SHRIMPERS
Inscribed, in pen and black ink, lower left of mount: 120 (by W. Esdaile)
Inscribed, in pencil, lower edge of mount: The Shrimpers. This is probably the original sketch for Gainsboroug's picture lately in the collection at Leigh Court but is now in the / National Gallery
Inscribed, in pen and brown ink, lower center of mount: Gainsborough (by W. Esdaile)
Inscribed, in pencil, upper left of mount, verso:[cut off] i Colle [cut off] / Exhibited Ipswich / Brussels
Inscribed, in pencil, upper right of mount, verso:Sketch of [indecipherable] / Picture National Gal.
Inscribed, in pencil, lower right of mount, verso:copy pink & Llue (sic. inverted)
Inscribed, in pen and brown ink, lower left of mount, verso: 1825 WE____Baker's Sale N120 (by W. Esdaile)
Inscribed, in pen and brown ink, lower center of mount, verso: Gainsborough (by W. Esdaile)
1785- 1825?, Gainsborough family;
1825, George Baker (London, England);
June 16, 1825, sold by (Sotheby's, London, England) no. 359; [as Studies, Group of Female Figures]
Thane (London, England) (note in annotated catalogue of Baker sale, British Museums scs 144 (5) microfilmed by University Microfilms, Ann Arbor);
William Esdaile (London, England);
March 20-21, 1838, sold by (Christie's, London, England) probably Esdaile sale.
by 1903, Arthur Kay (Edinburgh, Scotland);
May 23, 1930, sold by (Christie's, London, England);
(P. & D. Colnaghi and Co., London, England);
1934-present, purchase by the Detroit Institute of Arts (Detroit, Michigan, USA)
Bicentenary Memorial Exhibition of Thomas Gainsborough, R.A. Exh. cat., Ipswich Museum. Ipswich, England, 1927, no. 136 (as The Shrimp Girls).

Catalogue of a Selection of Studies and Drawings by Thomas Gainsborough, R.A. Exh. cat., P. and D. Colnaghi and Co. London, 1906, cat. no. 72 (as Studies of Figures: 'The Shrimp Girls' and Bust of a Girl in Profile).

"Exhibition of English Art of the 18th and 19th Centuries." Typescript checklist, Detroit Institute of Arts, Alger House Branch. Detroit, 1938 (as Shrimpers).

Exposition Rétrospective de Peinture Anglaise (XVIIIe et XIXe Siècles). Exh. cat., Musée Moderne. Brussels, 1929, no. 70 (as Pêcheuses de Crevettes).

Gower, Ronald Sutherland. Thomas Gainsborough. London, 1903, opp. p. 22 (ill.) (as Drawing for 'The Shrimp Girls').

Hayes, John. The Drawings of Thomas Gainsborough. New Haven, 1970, vol.1: pp. 52, 97, 101, 305-06, no. 844; vol. 2: (pl. 228).

Hayes, John. "Gainsborough Drawings: A Supplement to the Catalog Raisonne." Master Drawingss 21, 4 (Winter 1983): pp. 367-391, 379.

Italian, French, English, and Spanish Drawings and Watercolors: Sixteenth Through Eighteenth Centuries. New York, 1992, pp. 242-243, no. 115.

Newberry Jr., John S. Loan Exhibition of Old Master Drawings from Midwest Museums. Exh. cat., Detroit Institute of Arts. Detroit, 1950, no. 15 (as The Shrimp Girls).

"Rearrangements of the Museum's Collections." Bulletin of the DIA 14, 4 (1934): p. 30 (ill.) (as Shrimp Girls).

Scheyer, Ernst. Drawings and Miniatures from the XII to XX Century. Exh. cat., Detroit Institute of Arts. Detroit, 1936, no. 116 (ill.) (as Shrimp Girls).