Ralph Hedley, (British, 1848-1913)
Jack ashore, old Whitby
Oil on canvas
76.2 x 101.6cm (30 x 40in)
Whitby is a town in North Yorkshire, historic county of Yorkshire, northeastern England. It is situated at the mouth of the River Esk on the North Sea.
Ralph Hedley (31 December 1848 – 14 June 1913) was a realist painter, woodcarver and illustrator, best known for his paintings portraying scenes of everyday life in the North East of England.
Born in Gilling West near Richmond, North Yorkshire, Ralph and his parents moved to Newcastle upon Tyne around 1850, on the wave of industrial opportunity. Aged about 13, he was apprenticed to Thomas Tweedy in his carving workshops, simultaneously studying art and design at the 'Government school' in Newcastle, and attending evening classes at the Life School under William Bell Scott. At the age of 14 he was awarded a bronze medal by government's Department of Art and Science.
After concluding his apprenticeship, Hedley established a successful woodcarving business, whilst also producing lithographs for the local press and taking every opportunity to work as an artist. He had the first of many paintings accepted for exhibition at the Royal Academy in 1879. Joining with Henry Hetherington Emmerson and Robert Jobling, they founded the Bewick Club which encouraged and exhibited the work of the local artists of the North East, staging the first exhibition in 1884. More on Ralph Hedley
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