Dock Gates

Illustration © The Estate of John David Roberts. Reproduced with the permission of the William Roberts Society. Catalogue information based on the catalogue raisonné by David Cleall. For this and full details of the exhibitions cited, see the links below. Any auction prices quoted may not include all fees and taxes, such as VAT and Artist's Resale Right charges.

Dock Gates

Dock Gates (aka Disembarkation), 1920
Oil on canvas, 106.7 cm x 137.2 cm

PROVENANCE: Edward Wadsworth > Desmond Coke > Sotheby's 23 July 1931 (£42) > P. G. Konody > Lord Sieff of Brimpton (1931) > Sotheby's 23 Apr. 1969 > Anthony d'Offay (£3,700)
EXHIBITION HISTORY: London Group (2) 1922 (£150) ('Mr. Roberts, in his "Dock Gates," has certainly achieved a curious, intricate, and vital design, but he has made made great sacrifices of several accustomed elements of beauty to achieve it, and the picture leaves us bewildered both by what it has and by what it lacks' – The Times, 18 Oct. 1922), Chenil Galleries 1923 ('"Dock Gates," to name only one example, shows that Mr. Roberts would be the ideal decorator of a municipal or commercial building, and it is indeed remarkable that this picture has not been secured by one of our shipping companies' – The Times, 9 Nov. 1923), Edinburgh 1924 ('To compare the dignified sense of design and the finely accomplished craftsmanship, the respect for humanity, and the infective sense of the inwardness of life, in "The Pilgrimage," by Alphonse Legros, with the forced rhythms, the arbitrary treatment of form, and the mechanical conception of life and action, in the "Dock Gates," by Mr. William Roberts, is to become aware that insight, refinement and reverence are more valuable things in art than novelty of execution and intellectual theory, however up to date, for their own sake' – The Scotsman, 9 May 1924), London Group 1928, Copenhagen/Oslo 1956, Tate Gallery 1965, Anthony d'Offay Gallery (2) 1982

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