HMS Bounty by John Steven Dews
HMS Bounty by John Steven Dews HMS Bounty by John Steven Dews HMS Bounty by John Steven Dews HMS Bounty by John Steven Dews HMS Bounty by John Steven Dews
HMS Bounty by John Steven Dews

HMS Bounty by John Steven Dews

  • British artist John Steven Dews captures the HMS Bounty in this dramatic oil on canvas
  • The work portrays the famed Mutiny on the Bounty that took place in 1789
  • The drama of the composition is enhanced by Dews' extraordinary eye for detail
  • A master of maritime art, Dews is widely regarded as the greatest living marine painter
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Item No. 30-9627
John Steven Dews
1949- | British

HMS Bounty

Signed "J Steven Dews" (lower left)
Oil on canvas

The famed HMS Bounty is the subject of this monumental oil on canvas by accomplished marine painter John Steven Dews. The small merchant vessel of the Royal Navy was made famous in 1789 when its disaffected crew mutinied while at sea. With his incomparable eye for detail, Dews captures the drama of this historic moment in this extraordinary composition.

The mutiny of the HMS Bounty occurred in the waters of the South Pacific outside of Tahiti on April 28, 1789. The ship was acquired by the Royal Navy in order to transport plants from Tahiti to the West Indies on an expedition promoted by the Royal Society. Command of the journey had been given to Lieutenant William Bligh, an oppressive leader who was known as a harsh and cruel taskmaster. The crew arrived in Tahiti in October of 1788 and enjoyed an idyllic stay for months on the island. Perhaps the hospitality of the Tahitians only served to highlight the harshness of life at sea and the tyrannical nature of their commander - just 24 days after departing Tahiti, the crewmen seized the ship and set Captain Bligh adrift with 18 of his loyal supporters.

In HMS Bounty, Dews captures the moment of mutiny when Bligh is cast out in an overcrowded boat in the middle of the Pacific. With his deft eye for detail, the artist depicts the mutineers with their guns and swords raised on deck, while others toss the Tahitian tree saplings from the rear of the ship. Despite all imaginable odds, Bligh and his loyal crew survived their banishment, rowing almost 4,000 miles to Timor in the East Indies. The mutineers eventually reached Pitcairn Island in the South Pacific in 1790, and it is there where the HMS Bounty disappeared.

Overall, the work reveals Dews' ability to capture both the majesty of ships at sea and a compelling narrative. The artist has gained critical acclaim for his incredible maritime scenes. Born in Yorkshire in 1949, Dews learned his trade at the Hull Regional College of Art after being turned down as a candidate at numerous naval academies. He turned to art to express his love for the sea, eventually building a sizable enough portfolio to mount his first exhibition in 1976. An astounding success, nearly the entire collection was sold on opening night, and Dews received 17 new commissions. Ever since his blockbuster opening, Dews has enjoyed remarkable success and critical acclaim, earning numerous prestigious commissions and awards to this day as one of Britain’s most sought-after living artists.

Canvas: 24" high x 36" wide
Frame: 29 1/4" high x 44 1/2" wide
Artist: Dews, John Steven
Framed:44.5"W x 29.25"H
Unframed:36"W x 24"H
Period: 1919-Present
Depth:2.0 Inches
Width:44.5 Inches
Height:29.25 Inches
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