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Thomas Uwins

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Early Victorian Portraits Catalogue

Thomas Uwins

by John Partridge
9 7/8 in. x 7 7/8 in. (251 mm x 200 mm)
NPG 4231

Inscriptionback to top

Inscribed on an early label on the reverse, in the artist's hand: Thomas Uwins R.A. 1836./Painter John Partridge

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 lithograph and related water-colour, the former published J. Hogarth, 1858, are in the British Museum. Full entries for the other studies, representing J. J. Chalon (NPG 4230), C. R. Leslie (NPG 4232), and Robert Bone (NPG 4233), will be found in this catalogue. A study of another member, J. S. Stump, is listed in Partridge's 'Sitters Book', p 88v, 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 A. E. and J. J. 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. Uwins was one of the new members elected when the Society was reconstituted in 1829.

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 3.

J. Partridge, two MS notebooks (NPG archives)

Physical descriptionback to top

Healthy complexion, bluish(?) eyes, grey hair. Dressed in a black neck-tie, white shirt and black coat. Sitting in a chair, resting his hand on a table. Background colour red.

Provenanceback to top

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

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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