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 Nelly Erichsen  (fl.1882 - 1917)

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Lived/Active: United Kingdom      Known for: painting

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Biography from McTear's:
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Nelly Erichsen (9 December 1862 - 15 November 1918)

She was an English illustrator and painter.  Born in Newcastle upon Tyne, she was the daughter of a wealthy professional Danish family.  After studies at the Royal Academy in the 1880s, she carved out a successful career for herself as an independent, self-supporting illustrator and writer, working with a number of publishing firms including JM Dent and Macmillan, and jointly publishing travel books with Janet Ross, "queen bee" of the Anglo-Tuscan pre-War community.

In the 1881 Census, Nelly, aged 19, is described as an art student at the Royal Academy and this led her to a profession which rapidly became a means to her achieving independence and some commercial success.  Her first exhibited painting at the Royal Academy was in 1884: The Deserted Homestead.  The following year 1885 she gave her address as 2 New Court Lincoln's Inn and had four exhibited paintings at the Royal Academy.  In 1893, Nelly exhibited a picture at the Summer Exhibition entitled Phyllis.  Nelly's painting of The Orchard was reviewed in The Burlington Magazine for Connoisseurs.  Other paintings (probably oils) from this era include The Magic Crystal which visually points towards Pre-Raphaelite influence.  At this time Nelly was friends with a Fabian Socialist Bertha Newcombe and through her met the predatory writer George Bernard Shaw.  In 1894 Nelly engraved plates for a JM Dent limited edition of the novels of Susan Edmonstone Ferrier (Scottish novelist 1782-1854).  JM Dent, originally a bookbinder from Darlington, had founded his publishing company in London in 1888 and all his initial output consisted of limited editions of classic authors using handmade paper and high quality bindings and illustrations.  From 1891 to 1897 Nelly was a consistently successful exhibitor at the Royal Academy. 

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