Rich in tradition, our leading brands have been the natural partners for many of the world’s greatest artists.
For example, the collapsible tube first launched by Winsor & Newton made on-site painting possible and fuelled the Impressionist Movement in Europe. Many of these products are still made with the same careful methods and craftsmanship today, ensuring that our unique skills continue to achieve the specific quality standards demanded by a new generation of artists.
Not only have famous artists trusted our brands through the centuries, but they also often enjoyed close working partnerships with the companies themselves. For example, JMW Turner had a close relationship with Winsor & Newton as did the French impressionists with Lefranc.
At ColArt, we are fortunate in having inherited and preserved a fine archive of historical art materials.
A small selection from the Company’s extensive archives of products which have been influential in the development of art and art materials.
- 1&2 Genuine Rose Madder pigment (1): Winsor & Newton produce the world’s most light-fast grade to a recipe from 1806, using madder root from Iraq and Turkey (2)
- 3&4 Carmine pigment (3); the traditional crimson dating from the 16th C., produced from female cochineal beetles (4)
- 5 Genuine Gamboge still manufactured from tree resin and offering maximum transparency in Artists’Water Colour
- 6 19th C. silver water bottle for water colour artists
- 7 19th C. sable brushes with swan and goose quill handles
- 8 The ‘complete’Winsor & Newton water colour box (1860)
- 9 ‘Fat Oil’ (sun thickened linseed oil) a non-yellowing oil developed by Winsor & Newton in the 19th C. to speed up the drying of oil colours
- 10 Drying mediums for ‘pen painting’ (ca.1910)
- 11 1920’s Winsor & Newton poster colour, fore-runner of the highly pigmented opaque Designers Gouache
- 12 Moist water colours,first invented by Winsor & Newton in 1835, shown in an 1849 water bottle box
- 13 Gum arabic introduced by Winsor & Newton in the 1920s to improve the flow and transparency of water colour
- 14 Chinese White, the first opaque water colour for artists, invented by Winsor & Newton in 1834
- 15 ‘Pen painting’ craft oil colours; popular between 1907 and 1975
- 16 Winsor & Newton water colour cakes manufactured from 1832
- 17 Oil colours from Beckers produced from 1912 in cooperation with the Swedish Royal Academy, using only permanent and fully intermixable pigments
- 18 Specialised varnishes made by Beckers in Sweden in the 1920s, including cracking varnish for antique effects
- 19 Lefranc 19th C. oil colour mediums
- 20 Glass tubes of Lefranc artists’ pigment (19th C.)
- 21 Collapsible metal tubes which replaced pigs’ bladders in the 1840s
- 22 19th C. Lefranc oil colour tube made from pure tin, prior to the introduction of cheaper lead tubes. Lefranc introduced tube screw tops to artists’ colours in 1865
- 23 Lefranc gold paint (19th C.)
- 24 Naples Yellow developed by Lefranc in the 1860s