Painting by Sunderland artist William Kay Blacklock expected to fetch £6,000 at Christie’s auction

William Kay Blacklock's Early Morning On The River.
William Kay Blacklock's Early Morning On The River.
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AN oil painting by Sunderland artist William Kay Blacklock is expected to fetch thousands of pounds at an auction today.

The picture, Early Morning On The River, will be auctioned at Christie’s South Kensington in London.

The 18ins by 24ins painting is expected to fetch between £4,000 and £6,000.

Blacklock was born at Bishopwearmouth in 1870 and worked as a pawnbroker before moving to London and becoming a full-time artist.

There, he married Hackney-born Ellen “Nellie” Richardson, who was also his model.

They had a daughter named Eleanor, possibly named after William’s beloved mother. For the rest of his life, William and his family led a nomadic existence and lived in Chelsea, Leicester, Huntingdon, Walberswick, Suffolk, and Polperro, Cornwall.

Blacklock died aged 54 on August 11, 1924.

He left £1,335, 18 shillings and sixpence, more than enough to buy two decent houses in Sunderland at the time.

One of his executors was Sunderland-born artist Septimus Edwin Scott who, like Blacklock, had lived at Bishopwearmouth.

Scott became a successful designer of advertising posters and one of his railway posters, advertising Blackpool, sold for £2,000 at Christie’s last October.

The value of Blacklock’s work has steadily soared since his death, 90 years ago this year.

The world auction record is £95,000, the sum paid at Christie’s in London in 1996 for an oil painting called Sunlight and Shadow.