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John Callcott Horsley

John Callcott HorsleyBorn: 29-Jan-1817
Birthplace: London, England
Died: 18-Oct-1903
Location of death: London, England
Cause of death: unspecified

Gender: Male
Race or Ethnicity: White
Sexual orientation: Straight
Occupation: Painter

Nationality: England
Executive summary: Designed first Christmas card

English painter, the son of William Horsley, the musician, and grand-nephew of Sir Augustus Callcott, was born in London, on the 29th of January 1817. He studied painting in the Academy schools, and in 1836 exhibited "The Pride of the Village" (Vernon Gallery) at the Royal Academy. This was followed by numerous genre pictures at subsequent exhibitions up to 1893, the best known of these being "Malvolio", "L'Allegro and il Penseroso" (painted for the Prince Consort), "Le Jour des Morts", "A Scene from Don Quixote", etc. In 1843 his cartoon of "St. Augustine Preaching" won a prize in the Westminster Hall competition, and in 1844 he was selected as one of the six painters commissioned to execute frescoes for the Houses of Parliament, his "Religion" (1845) being put in the House of Lords; he also painted the "Henry V assuming the Crown" and "Satan surprised at the Ear of Eve." In 1864 he became R.A., and in 1882 was elected treasurer, a post which he held until 1897, when he resigned and became a "retired Academician." Horsley had much to do with organizing the winter exhibitions of Old Masters at Burlington House after 1870. When, during the 1880s, the example of the French Salon began to affect the Academy exhibitors, and paintings of the nude became the fashion, he protested against the innovation, and his attitude caused Punch to give him the punning sobriquet of "Mr. J. C (lothes) Horsley." His most lasting influence, however, was the design of the first Christmas card (1843), a lithograph edition of 1,000 for Sir Henry Cole. He died on the 18th of October 1903. His son, Sir Victor Horsley, became famous as a surgeon and neuropathologist, and a prominent supporter of the cause of experimental research.

Father: William Horsley (musician, b. 1774, d. 1858)
Son: Sir Victor Horsley (b. 1857)



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