Napoleon Bonaparte and his epoch
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The directory Artists

Northcote James

Northcote James  (17461831)

English painter. Born in Plymouth, Devon, on 22 October. From 1771 until 1775, Northcote studied painting under Sir Joshua Reynolds (172392). Following his formal training, he travelled to Rome, where he remained for three years. He returned to settle in London in 1781, attempting to establish himself as a painter of history scenes. He won some recognition for these, appealing as they did to the eras sensibilities; his Alexander I of Russia Rescuing a Peasant Boy from Drowning, for example, won a gold medal from the Royal Humane Society. Northcote was also among the contributors to Boydells Shakespeare Gallery. However, to modern tastes, his appeal lies in his portraits. His representation of Admiral Samuel Hood, 1st Viscount Hood, for example, is immediately striking, seeming to capture the astute, appraising quality in Hoods expression. This proved a popular image and Northcote painted various copies and versions after it. In 1787, Northcote was elected Royal Academician. He was also an active chronicler, publishing a popular Life of Reynolds in 1813 and Conversations with Hazlitt in 1830. He died in London on 13 July the following year.

Antigua, 1970, Viscount Hood, HMS Barfleur

St. Vincent, 1972, Sir Charles Brisbane


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