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Bernard Partridge character sketches

Past display archive
4 March - 16 November 2014

Room 29: case display


James Abbott McNeill Whistler
by Bernard Partridge
late 1880s
NPG 3541

Bernard Partridge (1861-1945) is now best known for his cartoon illustrations for the popular satirical magazine Punch. However, before turning reluctantly to the world of political caricature as ‘little more than a hack draughtsman’, Partridge worked as a professional actor under the pseudonym Bernard Gould. His social circle included many theatrical greats of the nineteenth century as well as key figures from the late-Victorian arts scene. Partridge’s early artistic output of the 1880s and 1890s reflected his personal interests, and mainly consisted of society caricatures and illustrated reviews of plays.

This display showcases a set of watercolour and gouache portrait studies of three famous arts personalities with whom Partridge was acquainted: the actress Ellen Terry (1847-1928), the progressive artist James Abbott McNeill Whistler (1834-1903) and romantic novelist, Hall Caine (1853-1931).

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