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John Jackson

John Jackson, by John Jackson, circa 1823 -NPG 443 - © National Portrait Gallery, London

© National Portrait Gallery, London

Regency Portraits Catalogue

John Jackson

by John Jackson
circa 1823
29 1/4 in. x 24 1/4 in. (743 mm x 616 mm)
NPG 443

This portraitback to top

The portrait is a late one in a series of self-portraits, the earliest dated by Dr Morgan to c.1808. They can be classified into three distinct types, all head and shoulders or half-length to left. The earliest, in Scarborough Art Gallery, appears the youngest, with his hair brushed forwards at the sides; an enamel copy by Muss in the V&A Museum holds an oval palette and is signed and dated 1819.
Later self-portraits have the hair brushed back and very luxuriant; examples are in the V&A Museum, c.1810-12 and Ferens Art Gallery, Hull, c.1815; a good example was restored by Holders in 1946; a miniature copy by Mary Brewer in the V&A Museum is signed and dated 1830; the type, distinguished from later self-portraits by its bushy hair, was engraved in mezzotint by Ward 1832, 'from the Picture now belonging to Lord Clifden'; he has no shirt-frill and holds a rectangular palette, the brushes held nearly upright.
The third type, c.1823, in NPG and copy in Ferens Art Gallery, has less luxuriant hair, an older face, oval palette with brushes held nearly at edge of canvas; the body is turned so that the shirt-frill is visible; a romanticised watercolour copy is in the Paul Mellon Collection. Hugh Honour says the NPG version 'seems to be the most satisfactory' (Hugh Honour, 'John Jackson' in Leeds Art Calendar VII, Winter 1954, p 24).

Physical descriptionback to top

Half-length to left holding palette and brushes, drab coat with black velvet collar, white shirt-frill and collar, black neckcloth; wavy brown hair, dark eyes, pale complexion.

Provenanceback to top

Bought from Henry Graves & Co Pall Mall, 1877.

Exhibitionsback to top

(This or another version)
RA 1823 (882); British Institution 1843 (158) lent by Lady Dover; Third Exhibition of National Portraits, South Kensington, 1868 lent by Viscountess Clifden; 'Yorkshire Worthies', Leeds, 1868 (1262) lent by Edward Bates.

Reproductionsback to top

Stipple vignette by Thomson for The European Magazine, September 1823, and again for Arnold's Library of the Fine Arts, 1831.


This extended catalogue entry is from the out-of-print National Portrait Gallery collection catalogue: Richard Walker, Regency Portraits, National Portrait Gallery, 1985, and is as published then. For the most up-to-date details on individual Collection works, we recommend reading the information provided in the Search the Collection results on this website in parallel with this text.

View all known portraits for John Jackson