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Remembered Today:

paul.hickey

Egyptian Watercolour - 1915 or 1916

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paul.hickey

We believe that this watercolour was sent back to his family in Australia by then Pte Leo McCartin, 22nd Battalion, AIF, probably in 1915 before the Battalion's transfer to Gallipoli in Aug 1915 or before the Battalion's transfer to France in 1916. The list of his belongings provided after his death does not include any paintings. The framing was done in his home town of Geelong and is English Oak.

The painting is signed by "A.HASSEN". I've googled this name and come up with only two certain matches where the spelling (Hassen not Hassan), the printing of the name, and a flourish at the end of the signature are exactly the same -

http://menziesart.si...ot&item_id=8628

http://www.ebay.co.u...=p2047675.l2557

We had assumed that this would have been quite a common item - there must have been plenty of street and other sellers in Egypt happy to help relieve the young Aussie soldiers of their 6-bob a day. The price of the second watercolour is much more what we were expecting compared with the first.

However, the description of the Artist attached to the sale of the second says

  • About the Artist: A. Hassen produced a number of watercolours of Middle Eastern scenes in the period 1920-1930 that have sold at auctions in the UK and Australia.

These dates (1920) however would put the painting after Leo McCartin's death on the Somme in 1918.

Does anyone have any knowledge/suggestions about the artist or this or similar paintings

Cheers

Paul

post-38358-0-41499800-1364449263_thumb.j

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seaJane

I don't think you need worry too much about the 1920 limit - it tends to describe only when an artist is believed to have been active, not necessarily when he actually was.

I'll have a search around and see if I can find anything.

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Guest yepp

Hi Paul,

We have a egyptian watercolour by A.Hassen that belonged to my Grandmother. We were also not sure how she came to have it. There is not much on the artist, however, we have been able to track down that an allotment was bought into Australia for sale and was sold out of a shop on Collins St, Hobart called 'The Bookshelf'. I have attached the link to the newspaper exert from the 24th Dec 1920, showing an advertisement for the A.Hassen original watercolours of Egypt. It also has the price they we selling for at the time which was interesting. I hope this is helpful.

http://trove.nla.gov...691?zoomLevel=1

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paul.hickey

Thanks for your interest in this, it's much appreciated.

yepp - thank you for taking the trouble to register on the forum and post that info.

Did your Grandmother have any family connections that servers with the 1st AIF? In the early years of the war the Australian troops were stationed in Egypt for their training.

I checked and both James Boa and William Edwin Fuller enlisted and served overseas. Their service records show that they both were stationed in Egypt for some time. Fuller gave his occupation on enlistment as bookseller and Boa as assistant bookseller. It would be pretty certain that their interest in Hassen's art was generated at that time and would confirm he was painting prior to 1920.

The prices in the advertisement adjusted to today's dollars suggest that the monetary value is nothing like the menziesart numbers in Post1. But of course we are not interested in the painting for it's monetary value.

Thanks again for pointing us to the 1920 ad. It's another interesting addition to our research.

Cheers

Paul

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Guest yepp

I am glad the article was of use. It was interesting information you found out about Boa and Fuller. No family members served in the 1st AIF. Good luck with your search.

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Suz

Hi Paul,  I have just come across your post 2013, whilst  researching  a  watercolour artist, A. Hassen.      I have a watercolour painting signed  by A. Hassen. It is of a bedouin camp scene.   I purchased it in 2013, at an auction in Hobart.    I would be most interested in hearing more of this artist paintings if you have such infomation.     The story of selling them  to Aussie soldiers from markets stalls is no different to today.   My son has purchased items in such markets in remote areas of  Afghanistan and they have proved to be of great worth back  in Australia.   Regards   Suz

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