Lloyd Kenyon, 1st Baron Kenyon (1732-1802) judge
Engraving1 January 1823
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- About the work
About the artist
London-born engraver James Fittler exhibited two sketches at the Free Society of Artists, aged 17. He studied engraving at the Royal Academy Schools from 21 and exhibited there between 1788 and 1824, becoming an associate in 1800. He was later appointed marine engraver to George III. He contributed to Boydell’s ‘Shakespeare Gallery’ and co-published ‘Views of Weymouth’ (1790-91) and (with Robert Bowyer) an illustrated bible (1795), losing some £1500 in the later venture. He published engravings for John Claude Nattes's ‘Scotia Depicta’ (1804) and made reproductions of Raphael's ‘Cartoons’ (1810). His last published works illustrated Thomas Frognall Dibdin's ‘Account of the Mansion, Books, and Pictures, at Althorp’ (1822). He died aged 77.
John Opie was born at St Agnes, Cornwall; the son of a mine carpenter. At c.15 his talent was recognised by Dr. John Wolcot, a physician, amateur artist and critic, who went into partnership with Opie, promoting his career. After Opie first exhibited at the Society of the Artists in 1780, the two arrived in London, Wolcot promoting Opie as the ‘noble savage’. George III purchased two paintings and by 1783 Opie had secured substantial patronage. His subjects included portraits, fancy pictures and history paintings. He became a member of the Royal Academy in 1787 and Professor of Painting at the Academy in 1805. Despite a passion for history and fancy pictures, he mainly exhibited portraits. His death at 45 is partly attributed to overwork.