Sir George Scharf
- Extended Catalogue Entry
Sir George Scharf
by A.S. Langdon
13 7/8 in. x 9 7/8 in. (352 mm x 251 mm) overall
Sitterback to top
- Sir George Scharf (1820-1895), Artist and art historian; first Director of the National Portrait Gallery. Sitter in 79 portraits, Artist associated with 80 portraits.
This portraitback to top
This portrait shows Scharf at home in his rooms at Ashley Place in Victoria where, when not at the Gallery, he would work surrounded by his extensive private reference library. Scharf's friend the artist A.S. Langdon depicts him drawing on tracing paper, a stylus holding the two sheets together. Alongside the sketchbook drawings, tracings were another important means of recording details of historical portraits and engravings. Formal training at the Royal Academy Schools honed Scharf's skill as a draughtsman, while formative experiences sketching with his artist father George Johann Scharf, fostered a natural impulse to document what he saw.
Linked publicationsback to top
- Saywell, David; Simon, Jacob, Complete Illustrated Catalogue, 2004, p. 551
Placesback to top
- Place portrayed: United Kingdom: England, London (sitter's home, Ashley Place, Victoria, London)
Linked displays and exhibitionsback to top
- George Scharf and his Circles: the National Portrait Gallery and the Victorian art world (21 September 2015 - 1 January 2016)
Events of 1870back to top
Current affairsWilliam Edward Forster's Education Act is passed, making provisions for education for all under-13s. It demonstrated the balance in Gladstone's first ministry between progressive reform and conservativism by spreading literacy, whilst maintaining the status of Church schools.
The Married Women's Property Act gives wives rights over their own earnings.
Art and scienceThe Russian composer Pyotr Ilyich Tchaikovsky's fantasy-overture Romeo and Juliet, based on Shakespeare's play and written with the aid of composer Mily Balakirev, debuts in Moscow, conducted by Nikolai Rubenstein.
W. G. Grace becomes cricket captain of Gloucestershire, marking the start of a successful decade for the club in which they won three 'Champion County' titles.
InternationalIsaac Butt, an Irish MP at Westminster, forms the Home Rule Association.
The Franco-Prussian war breaks out between France and a coalition of German states led by Prussia. Provoked by the candidacy of German Prince Leopold Hohenzollen-Sigmaringen for the Spanish throne, France declared war in July after Bismark published the deliberately provocative Ems telegraph, in which the French were represented in an offensive light on the issue.
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