Selected Artist Biographies

Sartorius, Francis (1734-1804)

A contemporary of George Stubbs (1724-1806) and Sawrey Gilpin (1733-1807), Francis Sartorius recorded scenes from all aspects of the eighteenth century sporting and equestrian world. He established himself throughout England and enjoyed popularity from many patrons including the Dukes of Cumberland and Grafton, Lord Grosvenor and Lord Rockingham. Regularly exhibiting from the London venues such as the Free Society of Artists and the Royal Academy, Sartorius became renowned for a slightly naive, old-fashioned style. Francis Sartorius was a fashionable equestrian artist, painting more portraits of winners on turf than any other artist of the second half of the 18th century. Francis Sartorius's prolific career provides an invaluable documentation of English country life in the 1700s.

Francis Sartorius (1734-1804)

Scott, Sir Peter Markham CH, CBE, DSC (1909-1989)

 The son of the explorer Captain Robert Falcon Scott and the sculptor Kathleen Scott, Peter Scott was one of the most versatile Englishmen of his generation, being an accomplished artist, naturalist, international sportsman, conservationist and man of action.

He started to paint geese and ducks while an undergraduate at Cambridge and then served with RNVR in the Second World War, where he was awarded the DSC and Bar and was thrice Mentioned in Dispatches. In 1946 he formed the Severn Wildfowl Trust, which was responsible, among others achievements, for the rescue from extinction of the Hawaiian Goose. He went on to become chairman of International WWF and subsequently of the Fauna Preservation Society.

Scott won a bronze medal for single-handed sailing at the 1936 Olympic Games and was British Gliding Champion in 1963. His paintings concentrate on ships, the sea and wildfowl and among the many books which he wrote and illustrated are 'Morning Flight'(1935), 'Wild Chorus' (1938) and 'The Eye of the Wind' (1961).

Sir Peter Markham Scott CH, CBE, DSC (1909-1989)

Serres, John Thomas (1759-1825)

Both son and pupil of the prolific maritime painter Dominic Serres (1722-1793), J.T. Serres’s career was given a head start owing to his father’s artistic connections, enabling him to exhibit regularly at the Royal Academy between 1780 and 1825. His reputation for draughtsmanship was rewarded with the appointment of Master of Drawing at the Royal Naval College in Chelsea. Further recognition followed as he replaced his father as Marine Painter to the King, while in 1800 he became Marine Draughtsman to the Admiralty. John Thomas Serres was soon travelling by sea throughout the expanding empire, particularly the Mediterranean, recording coastlines and documenting enemy positions. A selection of these works were later illustrated in the publication ‘The Little Sea Torch’ (1801).

John Thomas Serres (1759-1825)

Shackleton, Keith MBE (1923-2015)

Keith Shackleton began his travels early when his family moved to Australia. During the war he served in the RAF and painted war scenes with the Army and Naval Coastal Forces. He then joined the family aviation business for 15 years and painted in his spare time. Eventually the pressure of his own work increased to such an extent that he decided to give up his aviation commitments and paint full-time.

Since then Shackleton has worked extensively as a naturalist on the MS ‘Lindblad Explorer’ mainly in the Antarctic where he travelled with his friend, the conservationist and fellow painter, Peter Scott.

Keith Shackleton was president of both the Royal Society of Marine Artists and the Society of Wildlife Artists. In 1986 he was nominated Master Wildlife Artist by the Leigh Yawkey Woodson Art Museum in Wisconsin.

Shackleton’s work has been exhibited in solo and group shows at the Tryon Gallery in 1966, 1968, 2001 and 2007.

Keith Shackleton MBE (1923-2015)

Shepherd, David CBE (b.1931)

David Shepherd wildlife artist is regarded by many as being the world’s leading wildlife artist. Paintings such as Wild Old Elephant and Elephants at Amboseli have made him internationally famous and he feels passionately that he should repay his debt to wildlife. He has done so by raising huge funds for wildlife conservation and subsequently setting up The David Shepherd Wildlife Charitable Foundation.

David Shepherd is renowned for his landscape paintings and his portraits, as well as his wildlife paintings. In 1969 he was commissioned to paint Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother. David has a permanent backlog of commissioned work and his exhibitions in London, the United States and South Africa have all sold out quickly.

In 1971 he was awarded an Honorary Degree in Fine Arts by the Pratt Institute in New York and, in 1973, the Order of the Golden Ark by HRH The Prince of The Netherlands for his services to conservation. He was made a Member of Honour of the World Wide Fund for Nature in 1979 and in the same year Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II presented him with the Order of the British Empire for his services to wildlife conservation. In 1986 David Shepherd was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts and in 1988, President Kenneth Kaunda of Zambia awarded him with the Order of Distinguished Service. In 2008 he revisited Buckingham Palace to receive his CBE.

David Shepherd had his first one-man show at the Tryon Gallery 1962, followed by a show in 1965, 1971, 1978, 1985, 1991 and most recently a hugely successful show here in 2015.

HIs foundation is also worth visiting

David Shepherd CBE (b. 1931) Wildlife Artist

Shepherd, Mandy (b.1960)

 Mandy Shepherd trained at London's Byam Shaw School of Art and completed her degree in Brighton.

She then lived and worked in Zambia, South Africa and Zimbabwe where she had her first solo exhibition in 1980. In 1996 she headed for the South Atlantic to write her book 'The Falkland Islands - an Artists Portfolio'. Commissions for the military have since taken her to Bosnia, Kosovo, Brunei, Oman, Iraq and Gibraltar, and to sea with the carriers HMS Invincible, Illustrious and Ocean.

A number of exhibitions both with her niece and her father, David Shepherd, have been very successful in raising funds for the eponymous charity. Mandy Shepherd's  2010 Tryon solo show, in celebration of her 50th birthday, was a great success, as was her recent solo show at the end of 2012.

Mandy Shepherd (b. 1960)

Stubbs, George A.R.A. (1724-1806)

George Stubbs has long been considered Britain`s finest sporting painter owing to his meticulous examination and observation of the equine subject. He was born in Liverpool and worked for his father’s leather business until his mid-teens when he decided to pursue an art career. Largely self-taught, he initially painted portraits in northern England before choosing to study anatomy in York. His fascination with the subject developed further in 1754, when he spent 18 months dissecting horses in Lincolnshire. It seems this period provided vital inspiration and research for his later 1766 landmark publication, The Anatomy of the Horse – a groundbreaking set of engravings lauded for its scientific approach and attention to detail. It was recognition such as this that saw Stubbs receive generous patronage from aristocratic sportsmen, the success of which allowed him to be based in the fashionable London district of Marylebone for the rest of his life. His patrons marvelled in his ability to record sporting fact to a higher refinement than respected painters John Wootton and James Seymour before him.

Whilst no one could deny his ability and innovative methods, there were some in high artistic circles who believed his commitment to the `lowly` genre of sporting art, distanced him from the pinnacle of the contemporary art scene. Resultantly Stubbs never achieved full membership of the Royal Academy. During the second half of his career Stubbs diversified in an attempt to gain wider recognition. In particular he produced the famous Lion and Horse series, acclaimed for uniting classical subject matter with contemporary technique. The series was also used on a number ceramic plaques in a collaboration with Josiah Wedgwood during the late 1770s. One of his final projects, worked on from 1795, was Comparative Anatomy – a set of drawings comparing and contrasting dissected animals and humans. It was projects such as this that placed George Stubbs at the cutting edge of art and science.

Today one need not look beyond the salerooms to recognise George Stubbs` importance. With results frequently in excess of a million pounds, he can be ranked alongside the elite of British painters. The world record for a Stubbs painting is £22,441,250 which was achieved for Gimcrack on Newmarket Heath at Christie`s in London on July 5th, 2011.

George Stubbs, A.R.A. (1724-1806) 

Thorburn, Archibald (1860-1935)

Archibald Thorburn was the greatest ornithological artist, superior to all contemporaries in the same field, with a wonderful gift for placing his subjects in harmonious surroundings - his technique was dextrose and bold and his colour brilliant....'

So said his exact contemporary George Lodge, and Archibald Thorburn was certainly blessed with a precocious talent. He was exhibiting ornithological paintings at the Royal Academy from the age of 20, and his major breakthrough came when Lord Lilford employed him to complete the work on `Coloured Figures for the Birds of the British Islands' after the original artist (Keulemans) fell ill. Most sporting estates in Britain will have a Thorburn work, and he encompassed the taste for Sporting art in the early 20th Century.

Archibald Thorburn (1860-1935)


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