Arthur John Elsley

English painter, 1860-1952
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Arthur John Elsley oil paintings
Family Favourites
Arthur John Elsley
Item ID:34216
Arthur John Elsley
Item ID:34217
Grandfather's Favorites
Arthur John Elsley
Item ID:34218
He Won't Hurt You
Arthur John Elsley
Item ID:34219
Head study of a young girl
Arthur John Elsley
Item ID:34220
High Expectations
Arthur John Elsley
Item ID:34221
His First Fence
Arthur John Elsley
Item ID:34222
Home Team
Arthur John Elsley
Item ID:34223
Love At First Sight
Arthur John Elsley
Item ID:34224
Picking Apples
Arthur John Elsley
Item ID:34225
Arthur John Elsley
Item ID:34226
The Blue Ribbon
Arthur John Elsley
Item ID:34227
The Huntsman's Pet
Arthur John Elsley
Item ID:34228
The New Dress
Arthur John Elsley
Item ID:34229
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Arthur John Elsley 20 November 1860 London, England - 19 February 1952, was an English painter of the late Victorian and Edwardian periods, famous for his scenes of playful children and their pets. He achieved great popularity during his life and much of his work appeared in calendars, magazines and books. He was one of six children of John Elsley, coachman and amateur artist, and Emily Freer. Elsley's father had exhibited at the British Institution Exhibition in 1845 but later in life contracted tuberculosis which forced him into early retirement. (The British Institution in Pall Mall was founded on June 4th, 1805 for promoting the Fine Arts in the United Kingdom.) When only eleven years old, Arthur was turning out proficient animal studies made during frequent visits to the London Zoo in Regents Park. At age fourteen , he enrolled in the South Kensington School of Art which later became the Royal College of Art. At about this time his eyesight became permanently damaged by a bout of measles. Elsley took up the post of probationer at the Royal Academy Schools in 1876. Here he was influenced by Frederick Pickersgill (Keeper of the Royal Academy), Edward Armitage (Professor of Painting), John Marshal (Professor of Anatomy), and Henry Bowler (Professor of Perspective). A large number of his paintings were inspired by sketches made on frequent cycling trips around the countryside. He remained with the Academy Schools until 1882 and then began accepting commissions to do portraits of children and dogs, with an emphasis on horses. Many of his portrait commissions came from the Benett-Stanford family of politicians living at Preston Manor - some works still being exhibited there. His first known published work was a line engraving entitled "April Floods In Eastern Counties" printed in Young England in 1885. Elsley was friendly with the English painters Solomon Joseph Solomon and George Grenville Manton, sharing a studio with the latter in 1876. Through Manton Elsley met Frederick Morgan, a popular painter of children. In 1889 Elsley moved into Morgan’s studio, an arrangement that led to a good working relationship - Morgan having difficulties with painting animals, an area in which Elsley excelled. Elsley was awarded a silver medal in the Crystal Palace exhibition of 1891 for his painting The Bailiff’s Daughter of Islington. In 1892 his painting I’se Biggest was published, and later had to be re-engraved to satisfy public demand. The painting was of a young girl comparing her height with that of a large St. Bernard dog. The Illustrated London News printed one of Elsley’s paintings, Grandfather’s Pet as their Christmas choice for 1893.
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