Yacht race painting sets record at auction

HIGH PRICE Jamie Medlin's painting The triumphant return of the J-Class to British waters: The Solent, 18-21st July 2012
HIGH PRICE Jamie Medlin's painting The triumphant return of the J-Class to British waters: The Solent, 18-21st July 2012

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A PAINTING of a yacht built by an historic Gosport boat builder has sold at auction for a record £127,250.

Jamie Medlin’s painting of a 1933 J-Class yacht, named Velsheda, and built by Gosport’s Camper and Nicholson, sold to an anonymous bidder at Christie’s auction house in South Kensington.

The sale of the painting, which had a guide price of £30,000 to £50,000, marks the highest price paid at auction for a work by Mr Medlin.

The boat won multiple races when it was built in 1933 by Camper and Nicholson, which was established in Gosport in 1728.

And the painting, named The triumphant return of the J-Class to British waters: The Solent, 18-21st July 2012, captures the yacht in the middle of a race in the Solent earlier this year.

It was the first time J-Class racing yachts had returned to British waters in recent years.

Sarah Reynolds, a maritime art specialist at Christie’s, said that Mr Medlin’s work is unique amongst his peers.

‘His style is very different to a lot of the other contemporary marine artists,’ she said.

‘It’s got a slightly more photographic attention to detail.

‘What was particularly striking about this image was the light on the spinnaker and the sort of boldness of the image.

‘To be able to paint in that style requires a lot of time and work, more generally modern marine artists paint in a slightly more impressionistic style.’

Mr Medlin, who is from Cornwall and still lives in the region, has established himself in the maritime art world over a period of more than 20 years, with his work being sold at Christie’s for more than six years.

Mr Medlin, who has been described by specialists as ‘one of Britain’s finest living marine artists,’ sells his work at auction and also takes on private commissions.

This sale beat the previous record for one of his paintings, which was sold for £49,250 in November last year.

Miss Reynolds said: ‘It’s an exceptional price for this work.’