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compared to the extensive information about American artists.|
HOUSTON, John Adam (1812-1884)
Born, Gwydir Castle, Wales, to James and Susannah Muir Houston of Ireland; moved with his family to Edinburgh, c. 1820 where he began his art studies; pursued further studies in Paris and German, prior to returning to Edinburgh where he launched his career as a watercolorist; early success lead to his being made an Associate of the Royal Society of Art in 1841 and a full Associate in 1844; married Caroline Amelia McLean (b. 1830, Edinburgh) c. 1850; one daughter, Caroline Amelia Houston, (b. 1851, Edinburgh) born in 1851; removed to London, 1858 where he remained in residence for the rest of his career; first from a studio at 13 Charlotte Street, and then, after 1863, from a studio at Upper Phillimore Place, Kensington, a neighborhood best known for nearby Holland House, home of Henry Rich, 1rst Earl of Holland whose execution during the English Civil War may have provided the inspiration for Houston’s best known work; Holland Park was also the scene of the high Victorian Art Circle whose members included the history painter George F. Leighton and the seminal Pre-Raphaelite artist Val Prinsep; exhibited at the Royal Academy and the British Institution from 1841 to 1885 (extant record attached) where his work earned very substantial prices ; best known for his work in two genres, as a painter of scenes from English history, particularly the Civil War and as a landscape watercolorist in the Ruskian manner, accurately colored and highly detailed; several of his works were engraved, notably The Earl of Warwick, and Newton Investigating Light, the later of which enjoyed widespread circulation at the time; his most famous painting, The Fugitive Slave is in the Johnson Collection, Spartanburg, South Carolina; died, Phillimore Place.
Estill Curtis Pennington