William Artaud, portrait and history painter, was born on 24 March 1763, the son of a London jeweller. He won three awards from Incorporated Society of Artists during his teens and from 1778 attended the Royal Academy Schools in London. From 1795, Artaud spent four years in Italy on a Royal Academy scholarship. On his return to England, in 1799, he exhibited regularly at the Royal Academy, showing 85 paintings there by the end of his life. He specialised in large scale history paintings, many of which are now lost. Eight history subjects by Artaud were engraved for ‘The Poets' Gallery’, published by the picture dealer, Thomas Macklin. Today, his works can be found at the National Portrait Gallery and the Tate in London.
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