Raeburn, Sir Henry

born March 4, 1756, Stockbridge, Scot.
died July 8, 1823, Edinburgh

Scottish portrait painter.

Though apprenticed early to a goldsmith, he lacked formal training as a painter. He worked principally as a miniaturist and evolved a distinctive style of oil portraiture, painting directly on the canvas without preliminary drawings. His portraits are characterized by a vigorous handling of paint and vivid and experimental lighting effects, usually from behind the sitters' heads. He was elected president of the Edinburgh Society of Artists (1812) and Royal Academician (1815), knighted in 1822, and appointed His Majesty's Limner for Scotland (1822).

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▪ Scottish painter
born March 4, 1756, Stockbridge, near Edinburgh
died July 8, 1823, Edinburgh
 leading Scottish portrait painter during the late 18th and early 19th centuries.

      In about 1771 Raeburn was apprenticed to the goldsmith James Gilliland and is said to have studied with the Edinburgh portrait painter David Martin briefly in 1775. But for the most part Raeburn was self-taught, progressing from miniature painting to full-scale portraiture. A portrait of George Chalmers (1776) is Raeburn's earliest known portrait, and its faulty drawing and incorrect perspective suggest the artist's lack of formal training. By his marriage to a wealthy widow in 1778, he achieved financial security, and during the next four years he considerably improved his artistic skill. In London in 1785, while en route to a tour of Italy, he met Sir Joshua Reynolds (Reynolds, Sir Joshua), whose works were already familiar to him from Scottish collections and engravings.

      A man of many interests and a good conversationalist, Raeburn became a popular member of cultured Edinburgh society. By about 1790 he had painted the portrait of his wife and the double portrait of Sir John and Lady Clerk in which the artist experimented with unusual lighting from behind the sitters' heads. During the following decade Raeburn produced some of his most brilliant portraits, such as Sir John Sinclair (c. 1794–95), which foreshadowed The MacNab (c. 1803–13), in which tonalities became darker and lighting more contrasted. In 1812 he was elected president of the Edinburgh Society of Artists, becoming a Royal Academician in 1815. He was knighted in 1822 and shortly thereafter was appointed His Majesty's Limner for Scotland.

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Universalium. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

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  • RAEBURN, SIR HENRY —    portrait painter, born at Stockbridge, Edinburgh; was educated at George Heriot s Hospital; apprenticed to a goldsmith in the city, and gave early promise of his abilities as an artist; went to Italy; was introduced to Reynolds by the way, and …   The Nuttall Encyclopaedia

  • Raeburn, Sir Henry — (4 mar. 1756, Stockbridge, Escocia–8 jul. 1823, Edimburgo). Retratista escocés. De joven fue aprendiz de orfebre, y no tuvo educación formal en pintura. Trabajó principalmente como miniaturista y desarrolló un particular estilo de retrato al óleo …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Henry Raeburn — Selbstportrait von Sir Henry Raeburn, Öl auf Leinwand, um 1820 Sir Henry Raeburn (* 4. März 1756 in Stockbridge bei Edinburgh; † 8. Juli 1823 ebenda) war ein schottischer Porträtmaler der Romantik. Raeburn gilt neben Sir …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • sir — /serr/, n. 1. a respectful or formal term of address used to a man: No, sir. 2. (cap.) the distinctive title of a knight or baronet: Sir Walter Scott. 3. (cap.) a title of respect for some notable personage of ancient times: Sir Pandarus of Troy …   Universalium

  • henry — /hen ree/, n., pl. henries, henrys. Elect. the SI unit of inductance, formally defined to be the inductance of a closed circuit in which an electromotive force of one volt is produced when the electric current in the circuit varies uniformly at a …   Universalium

  • Henry — /hen ree/, n. 1. Joseph, 1797 1878, U.S. physicist. 2. O., pen name of William Sydney Porter. 3. Patrick, 1736 99, American patriot, orator, and statesman. 4. Cape, a cape in SE Virginia at the mouth of the Chesapeake Bay. 5. Fort. See …   Universalium

  • Henry — ► sustantivo masculino ELECTRICIDAD Denominación del henrio en la nomenclatura internacional. IRREG. plural henrys * * * henrio o henry (de J. Henry, físico inglés) m. Fís. Unidad de inductancia eléctrica en el Sistema Internacional. * * * …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • henry — ► sustantivo masculino ELECTRICIDAD Denominación del henrio en la nomenclatura internacional. IRREG. plural henrys * * * henrio o henry (de J. Henry, físico inglés) m. Fís. Unidad de inductancia eléctrica en el Sistema Internacional. * * * henry …   Enciclopedia Universal

  • Henry Raeburn — Sir Henry Raeburn (4 March, 1756 8 July, 1823) was a Scottish portrait painter.BiographyHe was born the son of a manufacturer in Stockbridge, a former village now within the city of Edinburgh. Orphaned, he was supported by his older brother and… …   Wikipedia

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