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JOHN SINGLETON COPLEY

WATSON AND THE SHARK, 1782

About the Artwork

Brook Watson had been sent to sea at fourteen; he decided to go for a swim while his ship was docked in the shark-infested waters of Havana Harbor. The painting depicts the moment when the shark is coming by for his third and possibly final attempt to make a meal out of Watson. The men in the boat were successful in harpooning the shark and heroically rescued the swimmer. Upon returning to the ship, Watson’s left leg was amputated and he was fitted with a peg leg. Later in life he became Lord Mayor of London and was often satirized, with his peg leg playing an important feature. This is one of three versions that Copley painted to commemorate the heroic rescue of Brook Watson. Rescue Group, a preparatory sketch made by Copley for Watson and the Shark, is also in the DIA collection.

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Quality
DIA Custom Prints offers exclusive custom reproductions of artworks in the collections of the Detroit Institute of Arts. Hand-made in the USA using gallery-quality materials, we create prints as true to the original work as possible, using strict color management protocols and state-of-the-art printing technology.
Selection
Many of the works offered through this store are exclusive and not available anywhere else. We are continually adding new artworks to our offering, so be sure to check back regularly as you build your own gallery. A variety of molding styles means our custom framed prints can match any type of decor.

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DIA Members will receive their 10% discount for all DIA Custom Prints purchases. If you are Member, enter the email address associated with your membership when you check out; once your Membership has been validated, your discount will be applied. Member discounts cannot be combined with other offers.