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Charles Robert Leslie

Charles Robert Leslie, by John Partridge, 1836 -NPG 4232 - © National Portrait Gallery, London

© National Portrait Gallery, London

Early Victorian Portraits Catalogue

Charles Robert Leslie

by John Partridge
1836
7 7/8 in. x 10 in. (200 mm x 254 mm)
NPG 4232

This portraitback to top

One of four similar studies in the NPG for Partridge's group portrait of the 'Sketching Society, 1836', listed in his 'Sitters Book' (NPG archives), p 87 (verso), under 1836, exhibited RA, 1838 (408), with the title, 'Sketch of a Sketching Society; the Critical Moment'; it was last recorded in the collection of W. A. Brigg, Kildwick Hall, Keighley, 1913. A related water-colour by Partridge, and a photogravure by J. Hogarth, published 1858, are in the British Museum. The other studies, representing J. J. Chalon (NPG 4230), Thomas Uwins (NPG 4231), and Robert Bone (NPG 4233), are included in this catalogue under the names of the individual sitters. A study of another member, J. S. Stump, is listed in Partridge's 'Sitters Book', p 88 (verso), as presented to the sitter. Studies of A. E. Chalon, C. Stanfield and Partridge are listed in his MS notebooks (NPG archives). The Sketching Society was founded in 1808 by Francis Stevens and J. J. and A. E. Chalon to study epic and pastoral design:

'The members assemble, at six o'clock, at each other's houses in rotation. All the materials for drawing are prepared by the host of the evening, who is, for that night, President. He gives a subject, from which each makes a design. The sketching concludes at ten o'clock, then there is supper, and after that the drawings are reviewed, and remain the property of him at whose house they are made.' [1]
Partridge's picture shows eleven members of the Society (himself included) grouped around a table, criticizing a drawing on an easel in front of them; Partridge was the president on this particular occasion.

Footnotesback to top

1) Autobiographical Recollections by the Late Charles Robert Leslie, R.A., edited by T. Taylor (1860), I, 119. See also Mrs Uwins, A Memoir of Thomas Uwins, R.A. (1858), I, 163-207, R. and S. Redgrave, A Century of Painters of the English School (1866), I, 485-7, and J. Hamilton, Victoria and Albert Museum, the Sketching Society (1971).

Referenceback to top

NPG Annual Report, 1961-2 (1962), p 4.

Physical descriptionback to top

Healthy complexion, dark brown eyes and hair. Dressed in a black neck-tie, white shirt, black coat and waistcoat. Sitting at a table. Red background.

Provenanceback to top

The artist; by descent to his nephew, Sir Bernard Partridge, and bequeathed by his widow, Lady Partridge, 1961.

Exhibitionsback to top

Themes and Variations: the Sketching Society, 1799-1851, Victoria and Albert Museum, 1971.


This extended catalogue entry is from the out-of-print National Portrait Gallery collection catalogue: Richard Ormond, Early Victorian Portraits, Her Majesty's Stationery Office, 1973, 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.

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