Arthur James Balfour, 1st Earl of Balfour (1848-1930) Prime Minister
- About the work
About the artist
George Fiddes Watt, portrait painter, was born in Aberdeen, the son of a carpenter who specialised in the construction of ships. Watts left school at 14 to take up an apprenticeship with a firm of lithographic printers. From the age of 21 he studied life-drawing at the Royal Scottish Academy and later received commissions for portraits, mainly of local dignitaries. He married art teacher Jean Wilcox in 1903 and had three sons and a daughter. In 1910, he took a studio in London and began to exhibit at the Royal Academy and the Royal Society of Portrait Painters. When the bombing of London was particularly heavy in 1940 he moved to Cults, near Aberdeen. He died in Aberdeen at the age of 87.
Process engraver and typographer Sir Emery Walker was born in Paddington; the son of a coach builder. He established a printing and engraving firm with Walter Boutall in 1886. Walker lived close to William Morris in Hammersmith and the two joined Walter Crane in founding the Arts and Crafts Exhibition Society in 1888. Walker was elected to the committee of the Society for the Protection of Ancient Buildings, founded by Morris and Philip Webb, who influenced Walker in joining the Socialist movement. Morris and Walker established the Kelmscott Press in 1891. After Morris’s death, Walker and T. J. Cobden-Sanderson founded the Doves Press in 1900, although a disagreement between the two soon severed the partnership. Walker was knighted in 1930.