British artists' suppliers, 1650-1950 - B part 2
A selective directory, to be revised regularly, 1st edition 2006, 2nd edition 2008, 3rd edition October 2011 (*revised entry, **new entry). Contributions and corrections are welcome, to Jacob Simon at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Charles Bradley, see George Squire
*Brandram, Templeman & Jaques 1782-1803, Brandrams, Templeman & Co 1803-1819. At 12 Budge Row, London by 1783-1787, 17 Sise Lane, Budge Row from 1788, as colour merchants. Brandram Brothers & Co 1815-1841 or later, 17 Sise Lane, as merchants, rather than colour merchants.
A leading colour manufacturer and supplier to the trade. The partnership of Brandram, Templeman & Jaques was formed in 1782 between Samuel Brandram, Thomas Templeman and Richard Lister Jaques, and followed on an earlier partnership. It was dissolved in 1803 and replaced by another partnership, named as Brandrams, Templeman & Co, made up of Samuel Brandram, Thomas Templeman and two other members of the Brandram family. In turn, this partnership lasted until 1819, when it became Brandram Brothers & Co (London Gazette 13 July 1782, 2 July 1803, 2 January 1819).
In 1789, James Turner (qv) appointed Brandram, Templeman & Jaques as sole vendors of his patented mineral yellow colour, known by the name of the Patent Yellow (London Gazette 11 August 1789). Brandram & Co’s green paint was recommended to artists in 1795 (Practical Treatise on Painting in oil colours, 1795, p.33, copy in British Library, 7854.e.36).
Joseph Farington and George Dance called on 'Brandrom' in 1798 to look at Ultramarine, priced at 4, 5 and 7 guineas an ounce (Farington vol.3, p.1076). Berger (qv) held stocks of Brandram‘s ‘Brown pink’ in 1810 (Bristow 1996 p.43). Quite whom Farington and Dance met in 1798 is uncertain, but it was probably Samuel Brandram, who was married at St Antholin, Budge Row in 1775, being listed at 17 Sise Lane in 1800 and who died in 1808 (Boyle’s directory, PCC wills). Samuel Brandram was a member of the Wax-Chandler's company (information from Gordon Cox, 2008, derived from the Livery of London lists in the Universal British Directory, c.1797).
For abbreviations, see Resources and bibliography.
*Robert Briggs 1833-1882, R. & C.R. Briggs 1848, Charles Robert Briggs 1852-1857, Robert Briggs & Son 1858-1899. At 57 Poland St, London 1833-1851, 1a Welbeck St 1851-1886, 8 The Terrace, High Road, Kilburn by 1891-1900. Tailors and lay figure makers.
In 1848 R. & C.R. Briggs advertised from 57 Poland St as lay figure makers, claiming that for the last 12 years, ‘a majority of the figures imported into this Country from Paris have been chiefly of his own make, he, during that period, having been the principal artist and superintendent of one of the first establishments in that Capital’ (The Art-Union Advertiser January 1848 p.xvii). Robert Briggs (b. c.1804) was active as a tailor from this Poland St address by 1833. By 1851, the business was located at 1a Welbeck St where both Robert Briggs & Son, lay figure maker, and Robert Briggs, tailor, were located, an arrangement which continued as late as 1875. In 1858 the business was listed as French lay figure maker.
The birth of Charles Robert Briggs, the son of Robert and Margaret Briggs, is recorded in 1828 and his christening later the same year at St James Westminster, but his age as given in census records would imply that he was born in about 1833. Charles R. Briggs (1828/c.1833-1914?) was listed in the 1851 census as a tailor, in 1861 as a lay figure maker, living at 18 Charles St, in 1871 and 1881 as a tailor at 1a Welbeck St, employing two men in 1871, and in 1891 and 1901 as a builder in Willesden. He died in West Hampstead in 1914, leaving an estate worth £252 for which probate was granted to his widow, Ellen Maria Briggs.
In 1886, the business advertised from Welbeck St that it had been established in 1827 (The Artist, vol.7, January 1886, p.32). By 1899, R. Briggs & Son was advertising from Kilburn, as lay figure makers, claiming ’40 Years in Welbeck Street’ (Art Journal, September 1899, advertisements p.6). Charles Robert Briggs was listed as a builder at the same address in Kilburn in 1896 and subsequently. The business both supplied and repaired lay figures for Roberson (Woodcock 1998 p.462 note 30), from 1863 to 1882 or later (Hamilton Kerr Institute, MS 180-1993, 183-1993).
For abbreviations, see Resources and bibliography.
Henry Bright, see S. & J. Fuller
*John Clater Brodie 1839-1850, Brodie & Middleton 1851-1945, Brodie & Middleton Ltd from 1945. At 69 Long Acre, London 1839-1840, 79 Long Acre (‘two doors from Drury Lane’) 1841-1981, 68 Drury Lane WC2 from 1982. Artists' colourmen, wholesale brush manufacturers and canvas preparers.
John Clater Brodie (1816-49) can probably be identified with J.C. Brodie, brushmaker, listed at 36 Bullesland St, Hoxton in 1838 and 1839. He was recorded in Long Acre in the 1841 census as John Brodie, brushmaker, age 20 (ages were rounded down to the nearest five in this census). Also listed were his parents, James Brodie, cooper, age 60, and Ann Brodie, also age 60, as well as Mary Clator, age 65. In 1847, Ann Brodie swore an affidavit that she was the mother of John Clater Brodie, who was born in 1816 and christened in 1819, and that an error was made in the register of baptisms, the name Clayton being put instead of Clater (‘London, England, Births and Baptisms, 1813-1906’, accessible at www.ancestry.co.uk).
John Brodie was recorded in directories as artists’, painters’ & grainers’ brush manufacturer in 1842, additionally describing himself as artists’ colourman in 1845, which became his main designation in 1846. He died in 1849, making complex arrangements in his will for his business to be carried on by his mother, Ann Brodie, and his ‘present assistant’, Thomas John Middleton. The business was listed in 1850 as ‘John Clater Brodie (exors of)’, becoming Brodie & Middleton in 1851. Ann Brodie, age 76, was resident at 79 Long Acre at the time of the 1851 census.
Thomas John Middleton (1817-89?) was recorded in the 1851 census as artists' colourman, age 33, at 32 Wakefield St, Gray’s Inn Road, with wife Ann, age 36. Ann Middleton was given as a partner in the business in 1851 trade directories. By 1854 Thomas John Middleton was listed in her place. He was living on the premises at 79 Long Acre at the time of the 1871 and 1881 censuses. He remained a partner in the business until 1887, but also traded independently as Thomas John Middleton (qv) from 1875 until 1882.
In their trade catalogue of August 1873 Brodie & Middleton described the business as established 1840, and advertised in sections as follows: superfine watercolours, colours and materials for illuminating, superior photographic watercolours, glass painting watercolours, drawing papers including Turnbull’s Bristol and London boards, brushes for watercolour painting, earthenware, enamel colours, etching and copper plate materials, oil colours, oils, varnishes, etc, brushes used in oil painting etc, easels and handbooks on art (Catalogue for Department No.1. Illustrated List of Colors & Materials for Oil and Water Color Painting, &c., 80pp, appended to James Callingham, Sign Writing and Glass Embossing, 1874, 2nd ed.). Other Brodie & Middleton trade catalogues from this period can be found as appendices to instruction manuals.
The business passed to Frank Trotman in 1887 when Thomas John Middleton reached the age of 70. It advertised as ‘the old established Artists' Colourmen’ (The Year's Art 1888, and subsequently). It had an account with Roberson, 1871-1908 (Woodcock 1997). By 1913 Trotman was claiming to have greatly expanded Brodie & Middleton’s trade, especially among scenic artists (Whitley papers vol.3, p.301, letters to Whitley from Frank Trotman, 29 September 1913, and his son Howard, 22 September 1913).
Frank Trotman (1855-1943) also owned James Tillyer & Co (see under John Sherborn). He would appear to have left his relatives to manage Brodie & Middleton: Frederick Trotman was listed at 79 Long Acre in the 1901 census as artists' colourman, age 49, born in London, wife Elizabeth, also age 49, with two sons Ernest and Leonard, age 23 and 20, and two younger daughters, while Howard Trotman, Frank Trotman’s son, was managing the business in 1913. By 1938 Brodie & Middleton were no longer listed as artists’ colourmen, but rather as ‘colourmen, sheet gelatine makers, colour merchants, & arts & crafts’, with D.G. [Douglas Gordon] Trotman and C.V. Trotman listed as partners or managers until 1946, at which point the business may have changed hands to become Brodie & Middleton Ltd. In 1946 the business was additionally described as theatrical colour merchants, which became its primary description by 1953. It donated a colour grinding mill to the Museum of London (Mireille Galinou and John Hayes, London in Paint, 1996, p.140).
Derek Jarman has left a description of the business, calling on his memories of the late 1950s, ‘Trips up to London in the holidays to Brodie and Middleton, Colourmen of Covent Garden, makers of cheap oil paint in tins. “Brunswick Green” my cheap favourite. Vermilion, très cher mes amis, très cher these reds’ (Jarman 1994 p.4).
Brodie & Middleton now supplies the theatrical trade from premises jointly occupied with Russell & Chapple Ltd. The name continues as one of three historic businesses listed in the Companies House register as at February 2005 as incorporated at 105 Great Russell St, London WC1B 3RY: Brodie and Middleton Ltd, incorporated 1945, L. Cornelissen and Son Ltd, incorporated 1980, and C. Roberson & Co. Ltd, incorporated 1985.
Sources: Proudlove 1996 (repr. a view of the exterior of the shop, c.1974); Carlyle 2001 p.340. For abbreviations, see Resources and bibliography.
Henry Brookes by 1783-1800, H.H. Brookes 1797-1799, Brookes and Temple by 1801-1808. At the Golden Head, Coventry St, Haymarket, London 1783-1784, 8 Coventry St 1784-1791 or later, 28 Coventry St by 1797-1808. Stationers, printsellers and portfolio and picture frame makers.
See British picture framemakers on the National Portrait Gallery website.
**Stephen Brookman by 1772-1773 or later, Brookman & Langdon by 1784-1864. In Vine St, Golden Square, London by 1772, 5 Vine St by 1784-1796, 28 Great Russell St 1796-1864. Black lead pencil makers, from 1858 also artists’ materials dealers.
Stephen Brookman (d.1786) married Jane Wheeler at St Benet Paul’s Wharf in 1754. They had five children, the eldest christened in 1755 at St Alfege Greenwich and the others between 1756 and 1765 at St John Horsleydown. Brookman was in Vine St by 1772 when he was a witness in a case at the Old Bailey. ‘Brookman’s fine Black Lead Pencils’ were being sold by the Fleet St bookseller John Pridden, perhaps as early as 1770 (George Stevens, A Lecture on Heads, no date but perhaps 1770, accessed through ECCO). Brookman’s best black lead pencils were advertised by the bookseller and stationer, M. Folingsby, in 1773 (London Evening Post 2 December 1773).
The business became a partnership by 1784 if not before between Stephen Brookman and Joshua Langdon (d.1799). Stephen Brookman’s sister, Elizabeth, was married to Joshua Langdon’s brother, John, a cloth weaver. Stephen Brookman, pencil maker of Vine St, took out insurance with the Sun Fire Office in 1779 and 1780 on properties in Angel St, St Martin-le-Grand, Southwark and Horsleydown. Joshua Langdon took out insurance with the Sun Fire Office on his goods in his dwelling house in Vine St in 1781.
Stephen Brookman died in 1786. In his will, made 20 July 1785 and proved 21 November 1786, he described himself as a gentleman of Kentish Town and made bequests to Elizabeth Langdon as well as to Joshua Langdon whom he calls a pencil maker of Vine St. Twelve years later Joshua Langdon died. In his will, made 22 January 1795 and proved 15 June 1799, Joshua Langdon, otherwise Langley or Longley, of Vine St, pencil maker, referred to his brother, William, and left his business and stock-in-trade to his nephew and executor, William Langdon. He also referred to property in Somerset and made specific bequests to various friends. In a codicil of 31 October 1797, he described himself as now of Great Russell St.
The nephew was presumably William Langdon (d.1829), who took out insurance as a pencil maker at 28 Great Russell St in July 1824. He died intestate in 1829 with an estate of £50,000, a considerable sum (The Times 20 November 1829). His widow, Frusan Langdon, carried on the business, going into partnership with James Lewis (d.1844). She renewed the insurance cover at 28 Great Russell St in 1831 and 1833, as did her son, Augustus, in 1836, 1837 and 1838.
The son, Augustus Langdon (1813-74), was described as a barrister in the censuses for 1841, 1861 and 1871 but as a pencil maker in 1851. He began trading in pencils as Brookman & Langdon in competition with James Lewis, who had taken a partner, Warren, to trade as James Lewis & Co, successors to Brookman & Langdon. In an often cited case in business law, Lewis v. Langdon, Lewis & Co was granted an injunction restraining Langdon from carrying on business in pencil making under the style of Brookman & Langdon (see Sources below; see also Morning Post 12 December 1834, 1 June 1835). Following the outcome of the court case, James Lewis advertised both in London and around the country as the sole manufacturer of Brookman & Langdon pencils, stamped ‘Brookman & Langdon’, giving his address as now 58 Great Russell St and claiming to have been responsible for manufacturing Brookman & Langdon pencils for the previous 18 years (Morning Post 12 August 1835 and subsequently).
In due course, some sort of accommodation appears to have been reached between Lewis and Langdon. In 1840 Augustus Langdon began advertising heavily as Brookman & Langdon, trading as pencil makers at 28 Great Russell St, his pencils marked ‘Augustus Langdon’ (Morning Post 4 January 1840 and subsequently). In the 1851 census, Augustus Langdon was recorded as a pencil maker, employing five men, living at 38 Norland Square, Kensington, and he appears as a partner in the business in London directories from 1843 until 1859. Brookman & Langdon had an account with Roberson, 1842-54 (Woodcock 1997).
In 1843, Brookman & Langdon was one of four black lead pencil manufacturers, along with Banks, Forster & Co (qv), Airey of Keswick and Mordan & Co, who were described as enjoying the highest reputation (William Waterston, A cyclopædia of commerce, mercantile law, finance, and commercial geography, 1843, p.525, accessed through Google Book Search). A more scathing view was expressed by an unnamed artist writing to the Art-Union in 1840: ‘What the genuine Brookman and Langdon's pencils may have been, I cannot pretend to say; but the pencils which now bear their names are worthless and trashy in the extreme’ (Art-Union, January 1840 p.5).
Augustus Langdon presumably disposed of the business in due course since in 1864 A.W. Wallis, trading as Brookman & Langdon, was made bankrupt (Daily News 30 November 1864).
Brookman & Langdon’s pencils: Brookman & Langdon’s pencils were widely available. They were sold around the country, for example by George Turner in Hull in 1814 (Hull Packet 20 September 1814), by W. Cubley in Derby in 1830 (Derby Mercury 30 June 1830) and by Morris & Gore (qv) in Birmingham and William Freeman (qv) in Norwich in or about 1840. They were also sold by Thomas Reeves & Son in the 1830s and by Charles Roberson & Co in the 1840s and 1850s. Overseas, they were available in Florence at Giuseppe Molini & Co in 1817 (Guida per osservare con metodo le raritá e bellezze delle cittá di Firenze, 1817, p.263, accessed through Google Book Search) and in the United States in New York at Peter Burtsill’s in 1817 and W.B. Gilley’s in 1819, in Philadelphia at Carey & Lea’s in 1824 and in Salem at John M. Ives’s in 1834 (Early American Newspapers at http:/infoweb.newsbank.com; Philadelphia in 1824: or, a brief account of the various institutions, 1824, advert p.16, accessed through Google Book Search).
Brookman & Langdon’s pencils at one stage seem to have enjoyed a particular reputation among artists and writers. The miniaturist, Charles Hayter, recommended them in his Introduction to Perspective in 1813. The watercolourist, Samuel Prout, purchased pencils from the business in 1817 (Richard Lockett, Samuel Prout 1783-1852, 1985, p.95), as did John Linnell in 1817, 1820 and 1827 as his account books show (Fitzwilliam Museum, MS 20-2000, 21-2000). Mary Shelley wrote from Rome in 1818, asking Thomas Love Peacock to obtain a dozen Brookman & Langdon pencils for her, specifying three each at hardnesses, BB, B, F and HF (Betty T. Bennett (ed.), The Letters of Mary Wollstonecraft Shelley, 1980, vol.1, p.82).
Sources: Guildhall Library, Records of Sun Fire Office, vols 274 no.415341, 277 no.418434, 285 no.431250, 295 no.448272, 297 no.450124, 499 no.1019062, 530 no.1123725, 537 no.1168003, 551 nos 1224403, 1245552, 552 no.1228902, 558 no.1286903. An account of the legal case against Langdon can be found in Nathan Howard, Practice reports in the Supreme Court and Court of Appeals, New York, 1860, vol.19, p.20, accessed through Google Book Search; see also Christopher Langdon, Square toes and formal, 2006, p.27. For abbreviations, see Resources and bibliography.
Added March 2013
J. Broom and Son, Church Street, Norwich.
Several paintings have come on the market in the past twenty years with a canvas stamp on the reverse in gothic lettering: J. Broom and Son, Church Street, Norwich. This would appear to be a modern stamp and not identifiable with any historic documented Norwich business.
Arthur Brown, see Kennedy and Francis
*Thomas Brown, 163 High Holborn, London 1805/6-1853, 260 Oxford St (‘Hyde Park end’) 1854. Artists’ colourmen.
In 1805 or 1806 Thomas Brown (c.1778-1840) took on the business which had belonged to William Legg (qv) and, prior to him, James Poole (qv). He was described in 1807 as ‘Brown T., Colour and Primed Cloth Manufactory, 163, High Holborn, Successor to Mr Legg, late Poole’ (Post Office directory). Thomas Brown, sometimes known as Old Brown, died in 1840 and was buried at St George Bloomsbury on 7 October, with his age given as 62. He left a lengthy will, proved 24 October 1840, in which his business and stock in trade as artists’ colourman went to his eldest son, also Thomas Brown, known as Young Brown. The will makes it clear that he owned freehold property in Kentish Town and at Cowcross St. Young Brown was not living at 163 High Holborn, a leasehold property, in the 1841 or 1851 censuses.
Young Brown was trading from 260 Oxford St in 1854, when there was a fire on his premises in which his 20-year-old daughter, Eleanor, lost her life (Morning Chronicle 7 April 1854). He ceased trading shortly thereafter whereupon William Eatwell (qv) set up in business, describing himself as ‘from Browns' and taking with him various customers (Proudlove 1996). The Browns had an account with Roberson, May 1828-September 1853 (Woodcock 1997).
In 1841 Young Brown was the first colourman to introduce oil colours in collapsible metal tubes, as patented by John Rand (qv). He advertised his patent collapsible colour tubes as ‘at a price very little exceeding Bladder Colours’, identifying practical advantages, also stating that he now manufactured watercolours (The Art-Union June 1841 p.111, July 1841 p.128 as ‘metallic tubes’, December 1841 p.207 with additional details). Henry Mutton (qv), Cambridge, advertised as an agent for T. Brown's patent collapsible metallic tubes. Brown's colours were also available in America: M.J. Whipple, trading from 35 Cornhill, Boston, advertised 'Brown’s Superior London Oil Colors, Put up in collapsible Tubes of various sizes' (Catalogue of Artists' and Drawing Materials, n.d. but c.1848-54, 4pp). Grundy & Fox in Manchester stocked Brown’s bladder colours in 1827 (Manchester Guardian 28 April 1827). An oil colour box by Thomas Brown dating to before 1841 belongs to Winsor & Newton (repr. Harley 1982 p.46).
Artists using Brown's materials: In 1842 Young Brown claimed that he, his father, and his father's predecessor, had between them supplied all the Royal Academy’s Presidents up to that time, and that they had been the favoured servants of the Royal Academy since its foundation (The Art-Union January 1842 p.18).
The Browns supplied many leading artists. Benjamin Robert Haydon and David Wilkie both obtained canvas and colours from Brown in 1809 to send to Sir George Beaumont (Cunningham 1843, vol.1, p.251, Whitley 1928, vol.1, p.335), and Wilkie in 1823 ordered a pot of asphaltum and some colours to be sent to a friend (Whitley 1930 p.44). Brown supplied John Trumbull (Sizer 1950), who in 1814 requested a friend to order flake white etc from 'my Colourman Brown in Holborn, opposite the new buildings near Broad Street St. Giles' (Theodore Sizer, The Autobiography of Colonel John Trumbull, Yale, 1953, p.344). William Etty, writing from Italy in 1823, expressed his regret that there was 'no Brown's colour shop' in Venice (Whitley 1928, vol.1, p.335); Etty’s biographer states that his canvases were always prepared by Brown who also supplied his colours (Alexander Gilchrist, Life of William Etty, R.A., 1855, vol.2, p.192). Benjamin Robert Haydon referred to using materials from Brown's for glazing a picture, 1831 (W.B. Pope (ed.), The Diary of Benjamin Robert Haydon, vol.3, 1963, p.508). Brown was also used by Thomas Lawrence, John Constable, J.M.W. Turner, Edwin Landseer (Whitley 1928, vol.1, p.335) and other well-known artists, see below.
One faithful customer was John Linnell, who went to the Browns from 1816 to 1851, as his account books and surviving bills and receipts show (Fitzwilliam Museum, MS 20 & 21-2000, 14518 to 14556-2000). Linnell made many purchases, covering a wide range of materials. He had earlier used Robert Davy (qv) for panels but seems to have turned to Brown from 1834, for example for Sir Robert Peel, 1838 (National Portrait Gallery) and The Orchard, c.1852 (Sotheby’s 30 November 2000 lot 151). Linnell purchased canvas and Cremnitz white from Brown, as documented in an account dated 8 September 1846 (Fitzwilliam Museum, John Linnell Archive); the account is headed 'PATENTEE OF COLLAPSIBLE METALLIC TUBES/ COLOURMAN TO ARTISTS', and has an appended note by Joseph R. Jordan, 'We know no other white to compete with the Cremnitz for colour, but we have Nottingham White, which has more body, but is not so good a colour'.
Canvases with Brown’s mark are relatively common, indicating the extent of the business. From the 1810s and subsequently, Thomas Lawrence’s Baron Crewe and Lady Crewe, c.1810 (Sotheby's 22 March 2005 lot 64), Lady Emily Wellesley-Pole, c.1814? mahogany panel (Hermitage Museum, St Petersburg, see Renne 2011 p.136), Lady Callcott, 1819, marked canvas and stretcher (National Portrait Gallery), Frederick Duke of York, c.1822, marked canvas (Christie’s 6 July 2007 lot 209), Martin Archer Shee’s Agnes Fairlie, tax mark 1811 (Bonhams 7 December 2005 lot 90), John Constable’s Stratford Mill from a lock on the Stour, marked stretcher, c.1811? (Victoria and Albert Museum, see Reynolds 1960 p.68), Yarmouth Jetty, 1822, The Chain Pier, 1827, and Hampstead Heath with a Rainbow, 1836 (all Tate, see Reynolds 1984 pp.109, 117, Butlin 1981), C.R. Leslie’s Self-portrait, 1814 (National Portrait Gallery) and Benjamin Marshall's Sam with Sam Chifney Jr Up, 1818, and Shoveller held by her trainer, Will Chifney, 1819 (Huntington Library and Art Gallery, see Asleson 2001 pp.266, 272). Constable made payment for a bill due to Brown in September 1825 (Beckett 1966 p.133). Henry Fuseli's Herodias(?) is undated, stencilled: T.BROWN - LINEN (Egremont coll., Petworth, no.401, information from Alastair Laing).
From the 1820s and subsequently, James Lonsdale’s Lord Brougham, 1821, and James Smith, c.1835 (both National Portrait Gallery), John Jackson's Samuel Prout, 1823 (National Portrait Gallery), S.P. Denning’s panel, Princess Victoria, 1823? (Dulwich Picture Gallery, see Ingamells 2008 p.203), George Dawe's full-length version, Emperor Alexander I, 1824 or later (Hermitage Museum, St Petersburg, see Renne 2011 p.77) and Thomas Phillips’s ‘Louisa Jane’, 1827 (Christie’s 14 November 1997 lot 43), George Lord Byron, c.1835, and John Dalton, 1835 (both National Portrait Gallery). George Hayter used Brown’s, visiting him for colours on 6 August 1838 (Diary, typescript, National Portrait Gallery Library); marked canvases include his The Trial of Queen Caroline, 1820-3 (National Portrait Gallery), Baron Lynedoch, 1823 (National Portrait Gallery) and his much later Latimer Preaching at Paul’s Cross, 1853 (Princeton University Art Museum, repr. Muller 1994).
Edwin Landseer used Brown’s canvases and panels; examples include A Deer fallen from a precipice, exh.1828, panel with printed slip, ‘PREPARED BY/ T. BROWN, 163, HIGH HOLBOURNE.’ (Sotheby’s Gleneagles 29 August 2007 lot 12), Hon. E.S. Russell and his brother, 1834 (Kenwood, see Bryant 2003 p.269), John Landseer, c.1848 (National Portrait Gallery), Dog with Slipper, panel, c.1848 (Sudley, Liverpool, see Bennett 1988), Alexander and Diogenes, exh.1848 (Tate, see Butlin 1981) and The Desert, 1849, marked: BROWN,/ 163,/ HIGH HOLBOURN,/ LONDON (Manchester Art Gallery).
From the 1830s onwards the stencil formats used by Brown have been codified (see Butlin 1981). In the 1830s and 1840s Turner obtained most of his supports from Brown (Townsend 1994 pp.145-6). Examples include various paintings in the Tate, see Butlin 1981: Ancient Rome: Agrippina landing with the ashes of Germanicus, exh.1839; The Dogana, S.Giorgio, Citella, from the Steps of the Europa, exh.1843; The Son of Venice going to Sea, exh.1843; Shade and Darkness and Light and Colour, exh.1843; Venice Quay, Ducal Palace, exh.1844; Whalers, exh.1845; Norham Castle, Sunrise, marked ‘TB 10 44’, and hence 1844 or later.
Canvases from the 1830s and subsequently include Richard Rothwell’s William Huskisson, c.1831 (National Portrait Gallery), James Ward’s Study of Sheeps’ Heads, 1836 (Tate, see Butlin 1981), J.S. Cotman’s An Ecclesiastic, 1836 (Norwich Castle Museum, see Andrew Moore, John Sell Cotman 1782-1842, 1982, p.147), Henry Johnson's John Ferneley, 1838 (National Portrait Gallery), John Martin’s Coronation of Queen Victoria, 1839 (Tate, see Butlin 1981) and H.P. Briggs’s Charles Kemble, 1830s (National Portrait Gallery). Intriguingly in 1837 the restorer George Barker senr was ordering lining canvas directly from Brown’s manufacturer to cut costs (see British picture restorers on the National Portrait Gallery website). Thomas Creswick used Brown’s panels for some of his work including Hartlepool, 1837 or later, Comme Dhuv, the Black Valley, Kerry, by 1838, and The Lower Lough Erne, c.1836-7 (all Sudley, see Morris 1996).
The American artist, Thomas Sully, used Brown’s canvases both when in London and in America and even wrote from America ordering absorbent canvas from Brown’s, c.1838, having noted Brown’s prices in a memorandum (Torchia 1998 p.186). Examples of his work on Brown’s canvases include Queen Victoria, 1838 (Wallace Collection, see Ingamells 1985), Child Asleep: The Rosebud, 1841 (Metropolitan Museum of Art, see Caldwell 1994 p.357), Andrew Jackson, 1845, marked: BROWN./ 163. HIGH HOLBORN/ LONDON/ ABSORBENT (National Gallery of Art, Washington, see Torchia 1998 p.184), and an unspecified portrait, 1853 (repr. Katlan 1992 p.457).
From the 1840s and subsequently, William Boxall's Lewis Cubitt, panel, 1845 (National Portrait Gallery), Ford Madox Brown's James Bamford, 1846 (private coll., see Bennett 2010 p.370), (John Partridge's Sir John Forbes, c.1847 (Royal College of Physicians of London, see Gordon Wolstenholme et al., Portraits Catalogue II, 1977, p.106), John Everett Millais’s Landscape, Hampstead, panel, late 1840s (Sudley, see Bennett 1988), Christ in the House of His Parents, begun 1849 (Tate, see Butlin 1981, Townsend 2004 p.97) and Return of the Dove to the Ark, 1851 (Ashmolean Museum, see Townsend 2004 p.125) and Charles Eastlake’s Escape of the Carrara Family, 1849 (Tate, see Butlin 1981).
From the 1850s, Frederick Richard Lee’s An Overshot Mill, 1854 (Christie’s 23 November 2005 lot 81), Margaret Carpenter’s William Smith, 1856 (National Portrait Gallery), Frederick Sandys’s Landscape with ruin, c.1859, marked panel (National Gallery of Canada, see Elzea 2001 pp.125, 340) and Stephen Pearce's The Arctic Council, 1851, Sir Edward Inglefield, exh.1853, and Robert McCormick, c.1856 (all National Portrait Gallery). Robert McCormick bears the canvas stencil, 'BROWN/ 260 OXFORD STREET/ HYDE PARK END', indicating a canvas supplied from Brown’s premises in Oxford St which he took for a short time following almost 50 years business, father and son, in High Holborn.
Sources: Whitley 1928, vol.1, p.335; Katlan 1992 p.456 figs 215-7; Proudlove 1996; Muller 1994 pp.33-5. For abbreviations, see Resources and bibliography.
Alexander Browne (active 1659, died 1706), The Pestle and Mortar, Long Acre, and other London addresses as below. Miniaturist, drawing master, colourman, auctioneer, print publisher and printseller.
Drawing master (to Samuel Pepys’s wife among others), and author of drawing manuals (the first in 1660) and of a treatise on art (Ars Pictoria, 1669), for which Arnold de Jode engraved his portrait after Jacob Huysmans (example in National Portrait Gallery). In the second edition of Ars Pictoria, 1675 (appendix, p.39), he advertised colours and other painting materials to be had from his lodgings and from the bookseller, Arthur Tooker (qv), stating that he had been collecting pigments over 16 years: ‘Because it is very difficult to procure the Colours for Limning rightly prepared, of the best and briskest Colours, I have made it part of my business any time these 16 Years, to collect as many of them as were exceeding good, not only here but beyond the Seas. And for those Colours that I could not meet with all to my mind, I have taken the care and pains to make them my self. Out of which Collection I have prepared a sufficient Quantity, not only for my own use, but being resolved not to be Niggardly of the same, am willing to supply any Ingenious Persons that have occasion for the same at a reasonable rate, and all other Materials useful for Limning, which are to be had at my lodging in Long-acre, at the Sign of the Pestel and Mortar, an Apothecary’s Shop; and at Mr. Tooker’s Shop at the Sign of the Globe, over against Ivie Bridge in the Strand.’ It has been suggested that this is probably the earliest extant advertisement for artists’ colours in England (see Harley 1982 p.17).
Browne published engravings from 'ye Blew Balcony' in Little Queen St near Lincoln’s Inn Fields, c.1680-6, and was later an art auctioneer conducting sales at his premises in Gerrard St, Soho.
Sources: Talley 1981 pp.185-8; see also The early history of mezzotint and the prints of Richard Tompson and Alexander Browne on the National Portrait Gallery website. For abbreviations, see Resources and bibliography.
J. Bryce Smith, see Smith
Owen Buckingham, The Swan, Bread St, London, 1681. Linen draper and canvas supplier.
Buckingham supplied canvas to Charles Beale (qv), 1681 (Talley 1981 p.284). He is probably to be identified with Sir Owen Buckingham (c.1649-1713), MP 1698-1708 and Lord Mayor of London in 1704, a self-made merchant who is known to have had interests in canvas supply and to have lived in Bread St.
Sources: Eveline Cruickshanks et al., The History of Parliament. The House of Commons 1690-1715, vol.3, 2002, pp.389-91. For abbreviations, see Resources and bibliography.
*Eliza Burnard, 23 Cross St, Hatton Garden, London, John Thomas Burnard, 23 Cross St 1859-1879. Brush and artists' tool manufacturers.
John Thomas Burnard (c.1825-83), tin foil beater, the son of a carpenter John Burnard, married Eliza Fisher in 1855. In 1871 census he was listed at 23 Cross St as a hair pencil maker, age 46, with his wife, Eliza (c.1824-77), age 47. E. Burnard, presumably Eliza Burnard, advertised brushes and decorating tools (Sable, Fitch, Camel Hair Pencil, and Artist’s Tool Manufacturer, trade sheet, as late M.A. Styring). She would appear to be the woman of this name who died in Lambeth in 1877 and her husband in 1883. The Burnards followed William and Mary Ann Styring (qv) at 23 Cross St.
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