Exhibitions: John Singer Sargent Watercolors

Sargent’s underdrawing for the church is meticulously executed in straight ruled graphite lines, whose end points are visible at the bottoms and tops of columns. Horizontal ruled lines of the stairs are visible through the washes of the figures in the boat. In contrast, the boats and figures in the foreground have minimal underdrawing and are rendered in loose, mostly wet washes. Sargent used a sharp tool to scrape off paint and create the squiggly highlights on and around the boats. This is the largest Sargent watercolor in Brooklyn’s collection and the only one both signed and dated by the artist.