£12m for a lock?

Canal Boat - - News -

CANAL RESTORATION GROUPS might jib at an ask­ing price of be­tween eight and 12 mil­lion pounds for a sin­gle lock– even a wide one – but in this case, that’s just the price of a pic­ture of a lock!

John Con­sta­ble’s well-known Suf­folk River Stour scene TheLock is due to go un­der the ham­mer, and that’s the price it’s ex­pected to fetch.

Sotheby’s auc­tion house’s Bri­tish pic­tures ex­pert Ju­lian Gas­coigne de­scribed it as “one of those pic­tures that cap­ti­vates – and the more one looks, the more one sees”. But wa­ter­ways ex­perts might point out that it’s also a case of “the more one looks, the less one sees”: The lock is miss­ing the large wooden lin­tels fixed across that cham­ber above the gates which were a char­ac­ter­is­tic fea­ture of the Stour – be­lieved to have been omit­ted by the artist to avoid block­ing the view of church in the dis­tance.

If you’re feel­ing rich, get along to Sotheby’s on 9 De­cem­ber to make your bid.

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