The Royal Cork Institution and its School of Art had close connections with the private medical schools in Cork, connections which were not surprising since at that time it was mainly doctors of medicine who studied anatomy and received scientific training. Dr. Woodroffe's School of Anatomy on Warren Street was one of the more important private schools. The sculptor John Hogan, who was studying from the casts in the Institution at this time, carved a male and a female skeleton for Dr. Woodroffe, for use in teaching anatomy. These skeletons survived within living memory, but seem to have been gradually dismembered by students of the School of Art in this century, to the point where all that now survives in the collection of the Crawford is a skull, a spinal column, some leg bones and a foot: Slightly macabre but finely carved relics of one of the earliest medical schools in Ireland.
Dr. Woodroffe wrote a letter to the managers of the Institution in June 1826:
When the Society for promoting the Fine Arts existed as an independent body, I was in the habit (at their request) of delivering a course of lectures on Anatomy as connected with sculpture and painting. Since the junction of that Society with the Cork Institution these lectures have been discontinued. The students have lately applied to me by letter, deploring their want of means or opportunity of acquiring a knowledge of what they justly esteem the Basis of their Art, and requesting that I should again resume my labours; their solicitation I am inclined (with your permission) to yield to . . .[McSweeney and Reilly (Part 1), p. 30]
The sculptures Woodroffe mentions were the plaster casts, which had arrived in Cork in 1818 (q.v.); he also mentions the amalgamation of the Cork Society for Promoting the Fine Arts with the Royal Cork Institution.
The miniature and portrait painter Hugh Danckert, son of wine merchant John Danckert 'long established in that city', was born at 9 Prince's Street, Cork. No other record has been found of this painter. [W. G. Strickland, Vol. I, p. 261]
In June 1826, Samuel Forde completed his first portrait, Eliza, and immediately commenced work on a ceiling for the Cork theatre. Forde, then just twenty years old, also completed his first major painting, The Vision of Tragedy, in 1826. It was painted in distemper, a skill Forde had learned while assisting J. Chalmers, scene-painter in the theatre, and master of the Society of Arts' drawing school. [W. G. Strickland, Vol. I, p. 374]
In Rome, Hogan completed the original plaster version of The Dead Christ (now in the Crawford Gallery collection). In a letter to his family, written early the following year, he describes the work:
There is one thing you must set to work immediately, it is to raise the wind about a famous basso-relievo which I modelled a short time ago; the subject is a Dead Christ laid simply at the foot of the cross from which rang the crown and the septre of insult. It is five feet long by twenty-two inches high, and is particularly adapted for the panel of an altar. In justice to myself all the artists say it is full of sentiment and character and very like nature. I should be satisfied to cut it in marble for £50 . . . as I would be pleased to have my original basso-relievo seen in Cork, to evince to the Committee that their encouragement had not been abused or mis-applied. [Quoted in J. Turpin, p. 56]
Henry Kirchhoffer, who had returned to his native Dublin from Cork ten years previously, was one of the original Associates of the Royal Hibernian Academy, and he exhibited sixty works there over eight years, from 1826 onwards, before settling in London in 1835. Amongst the Cork landscapes which he exhibited at the RHA in these years were views of Castle More on the River Bride, Castle Sullane at Carrig-na-Poucha, Blarney Castle, Ballyhooly (from Convamore) and Creameen Fall in Glengarriff. [A. Stewart, Vol. II, p. 161]
James and George Richard Pain designed the Manch House, at Ballineen, in West Cork, which was built for Daniel Conner in 1826. [M. Bence-Jones, p. 200](The Crawford Gallery collection contains two 18th century portraits of members of the Conner family, presented by Miss Conner of the Manch Farm in 1987) Also designed by the Pain brothers in 1826 was the small, but elegant, Anglican church at Buttevant. A number of such churches, mostly gothic in style, were commissioned by the Church of Ireland Board of First Fruits, and designed by the Pains; James Pain was their official architect for the Southern province. These same architects were also busy designing small, mainly classical, Catholic churches in county Cork during this same period; for example, at Kinsale, Dunmanway, Bantry, Millstreet, Ovens, and the Ursuline Convent at Blackrock. [M. Craig, p. 262] The church at Kinsale is notable, as the priest responsible for its construction, Fr. McNamara, became friendly with John Hogan while in Rome in the autumn of 1827. McNamara, who was interested in the arts, accompanied Hogan to the archaeological excavations at Herculaneum and Pompeii. On McNamara's death in 1845, Hogan was to design a superb marble memorial relief which was placed in Kinsale Church. [J. Turpin, p. 58]
Records of the annual exhibitions of the Cork Society for Promoting the Fine Arts between 1822 and 1828 are scanty. The Society appears to have become dormant during this period as the next extant catalogue which records an exhibition in Cork is entitled Exhibition of Paintings &c of Living Artists and Amateurs, at the Mechanics' Institute Patrick Street.It is dated 1828.No mention is made in the title page to the Society, which was not to reappear until 1833, the next year for which a catalogue survives--although those exhibitions that were held in 1830 and the two succeeding years were almost certainly held under the aegis of the revived Society, judging by the participants, and by contemporary newspaper references.
In 1827, the young Cork artist Daniel Maclise emigrated to London, arriving there on the 18th July. Two days before, Richard Sainthill had written a letter of introduction for Maclise to hand to Crofton Croker in London. [D. & M. Coakley, p. 50] Through Croker, and at a party given by the Halls shortly after, Maclise was introduced to 'a great many lions'.
In November 1827, Samuel Forde painted an important triptych altarpiece, The Crucifixion, for a church in Skibbereen. [W. G. Strickland, Vol. I, p. 374] Forde's biographer recounts the circumstances whereby a noted Cork painter of rather indifferent miniatures, 'Mr. B-', who enjoyed the patronage of the local Catholic clergy, was called upon to decorate a new chapel in Skibbereen. "He who very indifferently covered a few inches of ivory with stippling, was required to cover ten feet of canvas." [Anon: "Memoir of Samuel Forde", DUM, Vol. XXV, March 1845, p. 353] Forde asked to carry out the commission. (This altarpiece in now in Castlehaven church, an elegant classical edifice of this period.) [The altarpiece was cleaned and restored in the early 1970's, at the instigation of Davis and Mary Coakley.]
In 1828, the Cork exhibition committee consisted of William Crawford Jnr, Robert O'Callaghan Newenham, Daniel Callaghan, James Morgan, Julius Besnard, Webber Carleton, William Coppinger, Joseph Leycester, W. Edward Penrose and Richard Sainthill. The date set for the exhibition was in April, at rooms in Great Georges Street, provided by Robert Thompson [Cork Constitution,12th Feb. 1828, p. 1, col. 2] However, the venue appears to have been changed, for a notice on May 1st, required all paintings to be delivered to the "Saloons, for the Exhibition of Paintings in Patrick Street". This was the Saloon of Arts, the home of the Mechanics Institute where Forde taught drawing, and also the home of the sculpture cast collection which had arrived in Cork in 1819.
The exhibition opened there on May 12, receiving favourable notice in the Cork Constitution, which praised the bringing forward of 'whatever native talent may exist among us', and gave particular notice to Samuel Forde's recently-completed painting, the Fall of the Rebel Angels [Footnote: Cork Constitution May 24 1828, p.2, col.2] This painting, one of three works by Forde in the exhibition, was described in the catalogue as unfinished, due to the illness of the artist. Forde had contracted tuberculosis the previous year; he had less than a year to live. In his own journal he recorded starting work on the painting on February 10th, 1828.
February 23rd . . . From this day I began to think no more of it as to the exhibition. I was ill, and occupied with other things, till Mr. Deane (Sir Thomas) promised to supply me with thirty shillings a-week while I should be engaged in the execution of that picture. Brought it home that evening, and began a sketch of the front figures, in light and shade--carried on the figures in umber. [Anon: "Memoir of Samuel Forde", DUM, Vol. XXV March 1845, p. 355]
Other patrons were William Crawford, who subscribed ten pounds towards sending Forde to London; 'Dr. Murphy, South Mall', who gave the artist ten pounds towards the London trip; Mr. Corbett, who commissioned a portrait of himself, for two guineas, and Edward Penrose, who actually purchased the Fall of the Rebel Angels on April 23rd for thirty guineas while it was still unfinished. Penrose's neighbour, James Morgan of Tivoli invited the artist to stay at his house while he finished the painting and it was delivered to Tivoli House on April 24th. However, Forde was too weakened by his illness to avail of this offer and spent only a few days more working on the painting. It was delivered to the exhibition with the figures in the foreground still unfinished. The painting represented the moment of 'the defeat and banishment from Heaven of Satan and his Legions of Angels'. Forde had depicted the Messiah "in a flood of refulgent glory with uplifted arm issuing the dreadful Fiat from his Throne . . ." [Exhibition of Paintings &c of Living Artists and Amateurs, at the Mechanics' Institute Patrick Street. (Cork, E. Purcell and Sons, 1828), Royal Irish Academy, Haliday Pamphlet Collection] According to the description in the catalogue, Satan and a small group of angels surmounting the assembled hosts, looked back across 'tiers of glittering spears', chariots and horses, grasping his banner 'with impotent defiance'. Forde's biographer gives a more impassioned description: "Conceive a multitude--an avalanche--a torrent, thundering down and broken in its fall, sweeping like a flood, foaming through the picture. Such is the composition at first sight." ["Memoir of Samuel Forde", p. 355]
The Cork Constitution gave further coverage of the exhibition the following week, and praised another work of Forde's:
The Cartoon of Tragedy, . . attended by her attributes--Terror and Pity--calling up tragic phantoms - with Eschylus, Sophocles and Euripides - and Shakespeare - Milton and Byron, borne on clouds, and trying to catch inspiration from the vision - bears the same stamp of poetic fire and graceful execution [Footnote: Cork Constitution May 27, 1828, p.3, col.2: The Vision of Tragedy was acquired by the Victoria and Albert Museum in 1887 from a T. Willes Chitty; it measures 59" X 96" and is catalogued as painted in monochrome bodycolour; sketches by Forde for this and other paintings are also held in the Crawford Gallery collections: see Catalogue]
Forde had originally intended the painting for the interior of the theatre on George's Street, but the finished canvas ended up in the private collection of Dr. Willes (it is now in the Victoria and Albert Museum). Forde describes the painting in his journal as being inspired by Milton; and although the original sketches were full of drama, the finished work, painted in distemper and measuring about eight feet in height, was described by Forde's biographer as 'calm, passionless, dignified'. [Anon: "Memoir of Samuel Forde", p. 351]
A third work shown by Forde in the 1828 exhibition, entitled Portrait of the Artist, is now in the Crawford Gallery permanent collection (Cat. No. **). This is one of a very small number of portraits executed by Forde the previous year. Forde's health failed during the course of the exhibition; he died on June 29th, aged 23, bringing to a halt one of the most promising artist careers. His death was genuinely mourned by his friends and patrons, including the architect James Paine, for whom Forde had produced four paintings in distemper and also a model in chalk, for a monument which was never executed. It was of Forde's drawings for this monument that Sir David Wilkie is reputed to have said 'he would have thought they were made by some of the old masters.' [Ibid, p. 352] Paine is recorded as having the drawings in Limerick; he exhibited them in 1835, with the accompanying text:
The subject in the artist's mind was the victory and the final triumph over Death accomplished by the sacrifice on the cross. The cross, as the emblem of man's redemption, was to have surmounted the whole, and four figures kneeling at the angles, in adoration, pointed this out as its consummation. Four tablets is basso relievo were to have represented the mortal conflict. The first represents the interment of a youth. This is Death, 'the last enemy to be destroyed.' The second is the Archangel sounding the trump of doom, the change to immortality. The resurrection is the third--the victory achieved and angels bearing the youth through the air to his everlasting rest--the face is yet covered with the shroud. But in the fourth tablet, when that youth is presented before the throne, while his angelic bearers shrink back, veiling their faces from the insufferable brightness of the Almighty's glory, the youth enjoys the far higher privilege, promised to man alone hereafter, and views that presence 'face to face'. [Ibid, p. 353]
Apart from his self portrait, there are several works by Forde in the Crawford Gallery collection, including a number of fine ink sketches of soldiers, preparatory drawings for the Fall of the Rebel Angels. Also in the collection is a gouache study on paper entitled The Veiled Prophet, which was exhibited at the RHA in 1851, on loan from Charles Porter, LL.D, of Cork. This work also dates from around 1828. [A. Stewart, Vol. I, p. 269]
In all, there were 34 artists represented in the 1828 exhibition, with a total of 113 works shown. There were no works by old masters, and few by English artists. Among the local artists represented in the exhibition was Charles Skottowe, who showed portraits of M. Rogers and M. R. Westropp (painted for the members of 'Daily's Club') as well as a portrait of R. Ronayne. Henry John Noblett, then sixteen years of age, showed six works, including a View from Ross-Island, and St. Bartholemew's-well near Cork, while John Brenan showed watercolour views of Ballyhooly Castle (Evening), Flesk Bridge Killarney, the Old Weir Bridge in Killarney and Madden's Bridge in Glengarriff. Brenan later put in another watercolour, a view of the Upper Lake of Killarney, probably one of the paintings of the same title which he had exhibited two years before at the RHA.
The designs of architect Kearns Deane, for a new chapel in Patrick Street 'of a Grecian Order' were considered 'exceedingly grand and beautiful', while his model of the front of the Agora in Athens was considered 'correct and elegantly executed'. This model was a proposal for the facade of the new Cork Markets. In addition, Deane showed a view of the Pantheon in Rome. Two architectural designs by William Hill were shown, while his brother Henry showed several views of the river in Cork. Another Cork architect (and sculptor according to Strickland) named G. H. Buckley exhibited a Model of a Gothic Chapel at this exhibition. [W. G. Strickland, Vol 1, p.124] Four years later, Buckley was to exhibit similiar designs for gothic buildings at the RHA annual exhibition. [A. Stewart, Vol. I, p. 96] Similiarly, the architect George Richard Pain (listed as Payne in the catalogue), who in 1828 was working on the remodelling of Blackrock Castle, showed designs for the two elevations of Christ Church in the Cork exhibition. Pain's elegant designs for the complete remodelling of Christ Church's interior and portico were occasioned by a disasterous outbreak of dry rot in the building.
Not all the work of designing new chapels in Cork was awarded to architects of that city. John B. Keane, a Dublin architect, exhibited two designs for 'a Catholic Chapel for Cork' at the RHA in 1828. [A. Stewart, Vol. II, p. 138] Keane's designs were not exhibited in Cork.
Robert Richard Scanlan, a fashionable Dublin portrait painter (he painted portraits of horses and dogs as well as people), showed no less than fourteen works in Cork in1828, including five miniature portraits of members of the Smith Barry family, portraits of the daughter of Sir Henry Carden of Templemore, A. E. Kennedy, Esq. 11th Regiment, and a Portrait of Dr. Pitcairne. The report in the Cork Constitution dwells at length on Scanlan's talents:
Mr. Scanlan's beautiful miniatures deserve particular attention - they are exquisitely finished and conceived with fine taste - the introduction of a dog in one of a series of portraits of younger branches of Mr. Smith Barry's family of Foaty, produces a most happy effect, with the Child kneeling beside it. Mr. Scanlan paints that interesting animal most capitally - for instance, the greyhound in his full length drawing of Capt. A. Kennedy, which bye the bye is a most striking likeness of that gentleman - his genius for the grotesque is most strongly marked in the different groups he has contributed of that character, but his miniatures we find, are so much in demand as to claim almost his whole attention to them [Ibid]
Scanlan afterwards moved to London, where he remained until 1853, when he was appointed headmaster of the Cork School of Design.
Other artists received less favourable mention: The Holy Family of 'Mr. Keef' (John O'Keefe) was criticised for 'defects of drawing', while George Hayes was advised to mellow his 'teints' and 'effect a clearer stile of painting': Hayes showed a self-portrait, a Portrait of a Cat and some landscapes of a 'transparent character'. Nathaniel Grogan Jnr. showed O'Sullivan's Cascade, (interestingly, a painting of the same title ascribed to Nathaniel Grogan the Elder had been shown in the 1815 exhibition) while James McDaniel was represented by a landscape.
Daniel Maclise, who by this time had moved to London, where he was recorded as being 'in high business', had eight works included in the exhibition, including a self-portrait, two portraits of Mrs. Green, 'of Herefordshire', as well as portraits of Captain and Mrs. Sainthill, C. Marcel, T. Taylor of Dublin Castle and, lastly, a pencil drawing of Cupid. [Footnote: ibid] Maclise had entered the Royal Academy schools in April 1828, and was to carry off two silver medals that year. [W. G. Strickland, Vol. II, p. 67]
Amongst the amateur artists who submitted works was a William James Morgan (fl. 1828-1856) (not to be confused with Society of Arts committee member James Morgan), who was described in the Constitution as having 'very lately taken up the pencil'. His landscapes were considered to have a 'vigour and justness of feeling'. [Ibid., vide A. Stewart, Vol. II, pp. 290, 291] William James Morgan is recorded by Strickland as 'a Cork artist of much natural talent' whose career was marred by 'intemperate habits and irregular life'. [W. G. Strickland, Vol. II, p. 129] Miss N. Newenham showed six landscapes, while Robert O'Callaghan Newenham showed four landscapes and architectural views.
Artists from outside Cork who exhibited works at the 1828 Cork exhibition included Copley Fielding from London, Matthew Kendrick of Dublin and Mr. Thales Fielding.
The correspondent of the Constitution was particularly interested in a sculpture by Hogan which was listed in the catalogue but which did not appear to be in the exhibition. However after several days the work, entitled A Grecian Shepherd was put on show. This sculpture, which had been cast in plaster from a clay model executed by Hogan in Rome, caused some nervousness due to its fragility: the crowds attending the exhibition made the correspondent 'tremble for its safety'. [Cork Constitution, 31st May 1828, p. 3, col.1] John Turpin includes the finished marble version, which is now in the gardens of Powerscourt House, in his catalogue of works by Hogan. Turpin quotes a letter from Hogan where the sculptor describes how he had the clay model cast in gesso by a 'formatore' for the price of twelve scudi, and how he hoped some 'fellow would take a liking to it and order it to be cut in marble.'] George Petrie, who wrote a biography of Hogan in 1840, said that The Sleeping Shepherd was intended for the leading Cork architect, Thomas Deane, but necessities obliged Hogan to dispose of it to Lord Powerscourt, who purchased it at an exhibition at the Royal Irish Institution in 1829. This marble version is now in the gardens at Powerscourt House. The Deane referred to in Petrie's account is presumably the same (Thomas) Deane mentioned in the Cork Constitution:
. . .such a performance demands the choicest care of the professor, Mr. Deane, and calls for an anxious attention to its safety from every one feeling that honest pride arising from the possession (we may say by his country) of such an exalted specimen of talent. [Cork Constitution, 31st May 1828, p. 3, col.1]
This exhibition of Fine Art in Cork closed its doors to the public on 10 July 1828, after having attracted considerable attention, not least from visitors anxious to see the death mask of Napoleon 'taken the morning after his decease' which had been placed on exhibition for the 'gratification of the public curiousity, so naturally excited by it.' [Cork Constitution, 1st July 1828, p. 3, col. 1]
There was to be a two year gap before the next exhibition, which was planned for July 1830. [Cork Constitution, 24th Oct. 1829, p. 4 col. 3] Mr. Corbett of South Mall was to act as registrar for the planned 1830 exhibition.
In 1828, the Royal Cork Institution on South Mall was the home of one of the earliest ventures in public art education in Cork: A course of lectures on Painting 'both Theoretical and Practical, to be illustrated by Drawings on the spot', was advertised in the Cork Constitution of October 21, 1828. The lectures were to be given at the Royal Cork Institution by Mr. Cotter, 'of this city', and were described as a 'bold and novel undertaking'. Cotter was to present his first lecture free of charge, in order that the public could 'form an estimate of the Lecturer's talents'. Mr. Cotter was credited with having 'lately taken six splendid views of Cork Harbour, which are much spoken of. [Footnote: Cork Constitution Oct.21, 1828, p.2, col.5]
A Cork artist who does not appear to have been represented in the 1828, or any other early Cork exhibition was Samuel Uvedale (fl. 1828-1866), who is recorded by Strickland as living in George's Street, Cork, around this time. Uvedale afterwards became a teacher at South Kensington, and exhibited at the Society of British Artists in the late 1840's. The only time he exhibited in Cork appears to have been at the 1852 exhibition, when he showed 'views, portraits and flower-pieces'. [W. G. Strickland, Vol. II, p. 473]
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Insofar as can be ascertained, no exhibition was held in Cork during this year.
In November 1829, John Hogan returned to Ireland from Rome for a short time, bringing with him several works, including the marble Sleeping Shepherd, The Drunken Faun (plaster) and The Dead Christ, which, as Strickland relates, were exhibited in Dublin, the latter work being purchased for the Carmelite church in Clarendon Street, Dublin. On his return to Italy, Hogan began work on a second version of The Dead Christ, intended for Cork. [W. G. Strickland, Vol. I, p. 492] The original plaster version of The Dead Christ is now in the Crawford Gallery collection; the first marble version is in Clarendon Street, and there are two other marble versions; in St. Finbarre's, Cork, and in St. John's Basilica, Newfoundland. [J. Turpin, note, p. 195]
Daniel Maclise continued to excel in London, being awarded the Gold Medal of the Royal Academy in 1829 for his historical composition The Choice of Hercules. The presentation was made at a grand dinner presided over by Sir Martin Archer Shee, president of the Academy, and was described later in a letter which Maclise wrote to a friend, D. McEvers, in Cork:
Sir Martin [Archer Shee] made a most eloquent discourse of an hour, afterwards, and my hand having been well rung with congratulation, I found Donovan, Roche, and others in the hall--they had already heard of my success,--we went to Donovan's and had champagne, &c. Then it was raining coming home. I parted from all, unlatched my door, tumbled upstairs, broke my lamp, and was obliged to go to bed in the dark. Sunday when I woke I felt ill, dined out, drank too much wine. Monday got a regular soaking. Tuesday, got a severe cold and a sore chest. Wednesday, got an increase of ditto--pitch plaster to my breast, mutton broth, gruel. I also took last night two of your pills with effect. I had written dispatches home, and I have decided on not going over till September to their great disappointment, but it would be miserable this time of the year. I cannot recollect Barry's address. He will think me a terrible fellow. Do you recollect it? I burned his letter one morning . . .[Cork Examiner 10th May 1870, p. 2, col. 4]
In January 1830, Hogan's The Dead Christ was placed on exhibition at the Royal Irish Institution in Dublin (Strickland notes that the Royal Irish Art Union 'placed its boardroom at his disposal for the exhibition'), and attracted crowds of visitors, including the Lord Lieutenant, who was accompanied by the Duchess of Northumberland. The Cork Constitution of the day records that the Duke and Duchess 'were pleased to bestow many ecomiums on the grace and beauty and dignity displayed' in this well-known sculpture by Hogan, which was referred to in the account as The Redeemer after Death. [Cork Constitution, 5th? Jan. 1830, p. 1, col. 5]
Three weeks later, the Constitution recorded that "Mr. Hogan has disposed of his statue of the Redeemer taken from the Cross, for four hundred pounds. The price, though small as regards the merit of the work, will not appear inconsiderable if we reflect on the rate at which modern works of art have been appreciated in this country. It has been purchased, we understand, for Clarendon Street Chapel." [Cork Constitution, 26th Jan. 1830, p. 1 col. 5: This report was originally carried by the Dublin Literary Gazette The account continues with a brief outline of Hogan's career, mentioning his apprenticeship to Thomas Deane and his early work in Cork.]
Samuel Forde was another Cork artist who attracted favourable comment in the Dublin press; his unfinished The Fall of the Rebel Angels was described as being the 'most distinguished' at the Royal Hibernian Academy's exhibition of June 1830. The artist's premature death caused much lamenting in art circles at the time. [Cork Constitution, 5th June 1830, p. 3 col. 1]
Although an exhibition was held in Cork in 1830, no catalogue survives, and the account of this year's art endeavours, as with the two following years, is taken largely from local newspaper reports.
By May 1830, plans were well advanced for the next exhibition of Fine Arts which was to take place in the same premises in Patrick Street-- although they were now referred to as 'The Great Rooms', having passed to the proprietorship of a Mr. McDonnell, 'who is ever foremost in indulging the taste and wishes of his fellow-citizens', [Footnote: Cork Constitution, 18th May 1830, p. 4 col. 5; Cork Constitution , 11th Sept. 1830, p. 2 col. 5] but it was not until the beginning of September that the Society of Arts was able to open the doors of its exhibition to the public. The delay may have been due in some degree to the move that year of the Mechanics Institute from the Saloon of Arts on Patrick Street, to new premises in Cook Street.
The 1830 exhibition was distinguished once again by the inclusion of old master paintings which had been loaned from private collections in Cork. Amongst the artists listed as having contributed were 'Copley Fielding, Westall, Valby and Harding of London; Mulvaney, Kirchhoffer, Kirke and Lover of Dublin' and the public were urged to make an immediate visit to the "Society of Arts". [Ibid] The exhibition received good coverage in three following editions of the Cork Constitution, beginning on September 18, where the 'Picturesque views of the Antiquities of Ireland' by Robert O'Callaghan Newenham and the 'Architectural Views' of Mr. Hill were reviewed. Newenham's lithographed views of Ireland had been published that year in London, by T. W. Boone, in two quarto volumes, under the title Picturesque Views of the Antiquities of Ireland, drawn on stone by J. D. Harding from the sketches of R. O'C. Newenham. They had previously been published as individual numbers, each containing eight lithographs, by Ackermann in London, and Hodges and McArthur in Dublin, in 1826. [W. G. Strickland, Vol. II, p. 168] The correspondent of the Constitution also gave favourable mention to the 'Painter of Comedy', Mr. J. G. Mulvany, and described his painting The Introduction:
Here is represented an apartment in a Farm-house, in which the family has its meal prepared; the honest owner rising from his chair, receives with a hearty shake of the hand his friend, who points with complacent smile to his companion (his son we suppose), whom he is introducing, and seems as if saying, I told you what a lad he was. The young bumpkin, on whom the tailor has exhausted his best efforts, stands sheepishly, with hat in hand, eyes fixed firmly on his breast. The fair one, his intended, sits at her spinning wheel, with modest air and eyes half-turned to the hero, all doubtful as he is, whether to pay homage to the heroine, or to the ample loaf, cheese and roll of butter near him-- a divided allegience. The mother, all good nature and kindness is pleased indeed; the other members of the family are anxious to do honours. Where all is bustle, puss alone enjoys her nap - the dog is half-pleased, while the maid servant peeps with enquiring eye, and seems ready to report progress. [Footnote: ibid]
Other works mentioned were: Doctor Greene's Interior of a Monastery, a drawing of Dublin Bay by Mr. Thomas Rowbotham, who also contributed Running for Port and A Chase and some 'compositions' by Richard Dunscombe Parker. A view of the Interior of Salisbury Cathedral was shown by Kearns Deane, whose brother, Thomas Deane, received a knighthood this year, as much for his services to Cork civic life, as for his success as an architect.
The exhibition closed in early October, having achieved a good level of attendances and sales, and the Committee for the Promotion of the Fine Arts in the South of Ireland, encouraged by their success, determined to re-establish the exhibition on an annual basis, to award premiums to artists, and to purchase some 'specimens as models and studies for students'. [Footnote: Cork Constitution Oct. 5, 1830, p.3 col.1]
The premiums were to be as follows:
|For the Best Historical Picture||£6|
|For the Best Landscape||£5|
|For the Best Portrait||£4|
|For the Best Architectural Work||£4|
|For the Best Picture of any other class||£3|
These premiums were to be paid out of the £149.10s.8d which the Committee had managed to accumulate in the course of the first two exhibitions.
Reflecting the growing prosperity of Cork's merchant princes, the marine painter Matthew Kendrick exhibited at the RHA in 1830 a Portrait of the Yacht Paddy from Cork, the property of J. Caulfield Beamish, Esq., of Beaumont. [A. Stewart, Vol. II, p. 150] Kendrick, who exhibited frequently at the Academy, did not show any other works relating to Cork until over thirty years later, when he showed some views of Cork Harbour.
In county Cork, around this year, E. Badham Thornhill constructed Castle Kevin, near Mallow, to the design of an architect named Flood. [M. Bence-Jones, p. 71]
As with the previous year, no catalogue survives from the 1831 exhibition of the Cork Society of Arts, and the present account is derived from newspaper reports of the day.
News of the successful sales from the 1830 exhibition had obviously filtered through to the English art world, for when the time came for the opening of the 1831 exhibition, no less than one hundred and twenty-seven works by 'the best Masters in England' had been submitted in time for the opening on August 9th, although to their credit, the 'Artists of London' had donated some works to be sold for the 'relief of the suffering poor in Ireland'. Prices for the paintings ranged from '£1 to £100' and, in the event, sales from the 1831 exhibition were as brisk as in the previous year. Because of the increased number of works on show, the exhibition was divided into two rooms, one for watercolours and the second for oil paintings. [Cork Constitution August 25, 1831, p.3 col.1] The exhibition proceeded "Amid the collision of parties, the war of politics and reform and all the harsh and glamourous proceedings of our agitated time" [Cork Constitution July 28 1831, p.2 col.3] and was an occasion for renewed calls for the establishment of a permanent and proper School of Art in Cork:
Clever men, in other pursuits, strut and fret their hour upon the stage of life, die, and are forgotten in a day - but the artist leaves a name behind, which long outlives that of him, who in his time aroused more plaudits --the accomplished of all countries are his brethren, and genius and talent are the conservators of his fame. No small share of distinction has been earned by natives of Cork, in the pursuit of the Fine Arts, though compelled to seek for aid in other lands - how much reason is there to expect infinately more instances of this kind, when there shall be a School for the Fine Arts established in our Southern Metropolis? [Footnote: ibid]
This 1831 exhibition was noteworthy for the inclusion of works by several women artists, and Lady Deane was praised for her views of Killarney, while Mrs. Crofton Croker showed some 'very splendid drawings of England'. [Cork Constitution, 11th Aug. 1831, p. 2 col. 3] Daniel Maclise exhibited a portrait of the actress Miss Fanny Kemble (as Euphrasia), and this was hung alongside another portrait of the same lady, by Sir Thomas Lawrence. Describing this proximity as a 'severe ordeal' for the young Maclise, the correspondent of the Constitution adds that his painting 'vindicates a claim to such good company'. The artist 'W. Brennan' (possibly John Brenan of Cork), showed a view of a waterfall near Bantry, a view of the lower lake of Killarney, as well as a view of Blackwater Bridge. Another Cork landscape artist, Henry John Noblett, who showed Kilcrea Abbey in the 1831 Cork exhibition, moved to London that same year, where he showed five drawings of South of Ireland scenery at the British Institution. Noblett lived in London until 1835, exhibiting at the Royal Academy, the Society of British Artists, and the New Society of Painters in Watercolour, before returning to his family home at 29 Grand Parade, Cork. [W. G. Strickland, Vol. II, p. 174]
Around this time, the scenery of West Cork and Kerry was becoming well-known, particularly through the publication of illustrated guide books. A painter who supplied many drawings for these books was Dublin artist George Petrie, who made several sketching tours of Ireland. Petrie was particularly fond of a lake in West Cork where the River Lee rises, known as Gougane Barra, or the Hermitage of St. Finbarr. In 1831, 1834 and the year following, Petrie showed watercolour views of this lake at the RHA. [A. Stewart, Vol. III, p. 77] One of the guide books to which Petrie had contributed illustrations was G. N. Wright's Ireland Illustrated, which also contained an engraved view of Blarney Castle, after W. H. Bartlett, dated 1831. [R. Elmes & M. Hewson, p. 9]
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In 1832, the Society's exhibition opened in the midst of a cholera epidemic, and it was decided to donate half the profits of the exhibition towards the relief of the 'present prevailing Malady'. [Cork Constitution 20th June 1832, p. 1 col. 4] This exhibition contained 'specimens of Italian, Spanish, Flemish, Dutch, German, French and British Schools', as well as the usual representation of local artists, both professional and amateur. [Cork Constitution June 31, 1832]
Nathaniel Grogan's Whipping the Herring out of Cork and Powdering the Mayor were features of this exhibition, as indeed they had been features of the very first exhibition of the Cork Society of Arts seventeen years previously. They were described by the correspondent of the Constitution as 'exquisite pictures':
These very amusing pictures should be seen to be duly estimated; description could give but a faint idea of their various merits, and we are satisfied that the most serious person, must smile on observing the broad humour in the varied groups. [Cork Constitution 18th Aug. 1832]
Other paintings in the exhibition included a landscape by Ruisdael, a painting by an unnamed artist entitled The Attack of the Romans on the Sabines, and An Ancient Naval Combat by 'Platzer'. This last had been lent by a Mr. Hare of Bristol, at the request of ". . .our public-spirited fellow-citizen, Mr. Edden, of Nelson Place, an encourager of the Fine Arts, . ." [Ibid]
In 1832 Daniel Maclise made an excursion through Oxford and the midland counties of England, before travelling to Ireland, via Holyhead. Accompanied by Crofton Croker, he arrived in Cork, where they were guests of honour at the All Hallow's Eve party which was held annually, in a large barn, by Fr. Mathew Horgan, parish priest at Blarney. Fr. Horgan (1774-1849) was well-known as an idealistic, scholarly and energetic pastor, who shared his interest in Irish language and history with Cork antiquarians John Windele and Abraham Abell. Maurice Craig records the earliest example of the Hiberno-Romanesque revival in Ireland as being the round tower built by Horgan in the churchyard at Ballygibbon, near Blarney, in 1837. [M. Craig, p. 301] Horgan also designed churches at White Church and Waterloo in the Diocese of Cloyne, as well as the former Cobh Cathedral. [T. F. McNamara, p. 136] The evenings festivities of 1832 at Fr. Horgan's barn were to be the inspiration for a large painting entitled Snap Apple Night, which Maclise exhibited at the Royal Academy the following year. Maclise's biographer, Justin O'Driscoll describes the party:
It was the invariable custom of the good priest to invite a large party on All Hallows Eve; it was a social gathering where persons of superior position in society were to be found unaffectedly mingling with the poorest peasantry of the parish. Crofton Croker and Maclise were invited to this entertainment, and whilst the young artist, charmed with the novelty of the scene, surrendered himself heart and soul to the enjoyment of the night and joined in the harmless hilarity that prevailed, he contrived to sketch every group in the barn. [W. J. O'Driscoll, A Memoir of Daniel Maclise R. A. (London: Longmans, Green & Co., 1871, p. 31]
Attending Fr. Horgan's Hallowe'en party as a celebrity guest was only one of a number of honours accorded Maclise on his visit to Cork. Some weeks earlier, on October 1st, as the Cork Constitution related, he and John Hogan were presented with medals by the Society of Fine Arts, 'on their return to their native city':
One of the most interesting and certainly pleasing scenes we ever witnessed in Cork as connected with the Fine Arts, was exhibited yesterday at the Society's Rooms, Patrick Street, and attracted a large concourse of the leading gentry of this great City, of which the female portion formed a conspicuous and lively majority. It had been notified for some days that it was the intention of the Committee to present Gold Medals to Messrs. M'Clise and Hogan, who had been scholars in the Institution and there laid the foundation of that eminence in their profession which they have now attained. [Cork Constitution, 2nd Oct. 1832, p. 3 cols. 1 & 2]
The correspondent of the Constitution went on to outline the careers of Hogan and Maclise, noting that Maclise was intending to make a trip to the Continent, 'to study the Italian School of Painting', and describing the crowds then flocking to see Hogan's Dead Christ, which was on exhibition at 'the Old Custom House' (the Royal Cork Institution), having been purchased for 'a Roman Catholic Chapel in Dublin' (Clarendon Street Church). The presentation of the gold medals was an occasion of some formality:
At three o'Clock precisely, Messrs. M'Clise and Hogan entered the Rooms, the former leaning on the Right Worshipful Joseph Leycester, Mayor of Cork, and the latter on Robert O'Callaghan Newenham Esq., and followed by Daniel O'Callaghan Esq., M.D., Sir William Clarke, Bart., Wm. Crawford Jun. Esq., Sir Thomas Deane, Richard Greene, Esq., M.D., Mr. Alderman Garde, M.D., . . Mr. O'Callaghan Newenham read the following Address in a clear and distinct manner and which seemed to make a deep impression on all particularly that part of it which touched on the talent and genius and premature demise of that youthful Artist, Mr. Samuel Forde. [Footnote: ibid]
O'Callaghan's speech also touched on various aspects of the Society's history, from its establishment in 1818 (sic), with 'a small but respectable' exhibition, through the presentation of the casts by 'our late Royal and lamented Patron, His Majesty George the Fourth', before coming to the point of the assembly--the presentation of gold medals to each artist 'as an abiding testimonial'. Both medals were inscribed, Maclise's with the legend "Alumno suo Danieli Maclise Egregie in pictura merenti Societatis Artium Corcagiensis Sep. 26, 1832" [W. G. Strickland, Vol. II, p. 67] The address and presentation were followed with loud applause.
Daniel Maclise responded with a speech, which, in spite of its formality, gives an insight into the conditions under which he and John Hogan first encountered the Fine Arts:
You have honoured us by a conjoint address, and our reply is directed by the most perfect union of gratitude to your zeal. We are indebted for the weaving of that spell which once brought up before our eyes the brightest forms of antiquity for inspiration, and gave us in one blazing vision an idea of perfection we had never conceived before and an incentive which has remained with us till this hour. We then for the first time saw
"What mind can make when nature's self would fail"
We saw the Apollo-
"The Lord of the unerring bow
The god of life and poesy & light
The sun in human limbs array'd"
Stood like all that we could conceive of a God before us, and we looked upon him with an admiration which we felt might have kindled into idolatry - we gazed in sympathy on Laocoon . . .
In such a fountain of inspiration we essayed to dip our scallop shells; and went our way, but the consciousness that the eye of patronage and observation was upon us has furnished us with a motive so powerful as is now afforded us, for the kind interest you, gentlemen exhibit in our advancment is surely an incentive that must excite and inspire the dullest and most lethargic. [Cork Constitution, 2nd Oct. 1832, p. 3 cols. 1 & 2]
In bringing the formalities of the day to an end, Robert O'Callaghan Newenham brought to the attention of the audience the death of one of the members of the Society of Arts, Weber Carleton, whose funeral he surmised might be at that very moment wending its way through the streets of Cork. O'Callaghan Newenham pointed out that the paintings by Carleton included in the exhibition were for sale and that the late artist had asked that money raised from their sale should go to charity.
Judging from the several notices in the Constitution concerning the exhibition of Hogan's Dead Christ in the Royal Cork Institution, the artist remained in Cork, working on this sculpture, for some months: It was to be exhibited in 1833 at the Royal Academy in London. Turpin relates Hogan's disappointment at the poor reception given to the Dead Christ in London, but points out that Hogan would have been better advised to have made his London debut with The Shepherd Boy or The Drunken Faun. [Footnote: Turpin, p. 64]
In October of 1832, the Royal Cork Institution moved its large collection of books, scientific instruments and sculpture casts into its new home at the Old Custom House. From then on, that building became a centre for advanced education in Cork, both in the Sciences and the Fine Arts. The Canova cast collection, which had been purchased by the RCI from the Cork Society of Arts, was also transferred to the Old Custom House, as were the drawing and sculpting classes, originally run by the Society of Arts, but now taken over by the Institution. A battered tin trunk, still preserved in the Crawford Art Gallery, contains a substantial part of the Royal Cork Institution's collection of 1,145 'sulphur gems', copies of antique gems, cast by the firm of Tassie and Wilson in London, and used in the teaching of art. [T. F. McNamara, p. 38]
Strickland records the Cork miniature painter John Minton Connell as residing at 5 Fitton Street in 1832, where he painted miniatures 'at from one to twenty guineas'. [W. G. Strickland, Vol. I, p. 202]
In 1832, Cork artist James McDaniel exhibited a Landscape-Composition at the RHA annual exhibition. [A. Stewart, Vol. II, p. 219]
Also in that year's RHA exhibition, the Cork architect William Atkins showed a Design for a Temple to the Fine Arts. [A. Stewart, Vol. I, p. 22] Curiously, there is no record of Atkins having ever exhibited in Cork. He exhibited once more at the RHA, in 1863.
Kearns Deane, brother of the first Sir Thomas Deane, was the architect of St. Mary's Dominican Church, the slow construction of which began in 1832. Its portico was not completed until almost thirty years later. The interior design is possibly by John Pyne Hurley of Cork, while the magnificent baldachino over the main altar is credited to Scannell, also of Cork. [M. Craig, p. 262]
At Carrigrohane, just outside Cork city, the Morgan family built a house in 1832, named "Ardnalee". [M. Bence-Jones, p. 10] This house contained a small room panelled with wooden blocks used for printing wall-papers; a room which may have been the inspiration for the panelled marquetry room made in Staten Island, New York, by Jane Morgan later in the 19th century, which is now in Hollybrook House, near Skibbereen. Jane Morgan was the daughter of James Morgan, of "Prospect", Carrigrohane. She was born in 1832. [W. G. Strickland, Vol. II, p. 128] This Morgan was probably a relative of the James Morgan whose Palladian house at Tivoli had been destroyed by fire over a decade before. [M. Bence-Jones, p. 273]
Windele's description of the Cork Society for Promoting the Fine Arts as "but a flickering affair, at one moment apparently extinct, and in the next, again revived" [Footnote: John Windele Guide to the South of Ireland: Historical and Descriptive Notices of the City of Cork and its Vicinity, (Cork: Messrs. Bolster 70 Patrick St., 1846), p.131] seems particularly apt even on a cursory examination of the title pages of the extant catalogues for the annual exhibitions. The Society, after apparently lying dormant for much of the previous decade, appears suddenly to be revived in 1833, its full name again gracing the title page of the catalogue for that year's annual exhibition. Windele's other criticism of the Society, "that its benefits had been more generally bestowed on strangers, than on the productions of native artists" is borne out by the preface to the catalogue:
The Committee feel much pleasure in announcing to the Public, that having submitted the plan of this Exhibition to some of the most eminent Artists in England, they have, with becoming liberality, sent specimens of their Work for Exhibition and Sale . . . . A person attends with a Book, containing the Prices of such Pictures as are to be disposed of, with whom the purchaser is requested to leave his address, with a deposit of 20 per cent, when the Picture will be marked as Sold. [Catalogue to the 1833 exhibition of the Cork Society for Promoting the Fine Arts, (Cork: P. Jackson, Albion & Columbian Press Office, 26 South Mall) (Collection, National Library of Ireland)]
The 1833 exhibition was shown in two rooms; the first contained 135 works by 43 artists, mostly living artists--although Samuel Forde's Fall of the Rebel Angels was included, while the second room contained a further 73 works by old masters and eminent Cork artists such as Grogan, Butts and Barry.
In the first room, the familiar names of Hogan, Maclise (or McClise, as it was commonly spelt at that time), Beale, Brenan, McDaniel, Hill, Morgan, Penrose and Carleton were added to by relative newcomers Richard Dunscombe Parker, Louis K. Bradford, James Mahoney (spelt 'Mahony' in the catalogue) and Robert Lowe Stopford (1813-1898), who showed four works, amongst them Blackrock Castle, View of Rostellan Castle and Carrigrohan Castle. Stopford, a Dublin-born topographical watercolourist, settled in Cork while a young man and worked successfully there until his death in Monkstown, Co. Cork, in his eighty-fifth year. Many of his works were lithographed, such as Cork Harbour, Queens College Cork and The Evening Gun, Haulbowline Island. He was for many years art correspondent in the south of Ireland for the Illustrated London News and other papers. [W. G. Strickland, Vol. II, p. 404]
Of the works by better-known artists in the 1833 Cork exhibition, it was probably Daniel Maclise's Snap-Apple Night (which was also to be exhibited at the Royal Academy that same year) that would have attracted most attention, and it was given prominent notice, with verse appended, in the catalogue:
There Peggy was dancing with Dan
While Maureen the lead was melting,
To prove how their fortunes ran
With the Cards ould Nancy dealt in;
There was Kate, and her sweet-heart Will,
In nuts their true-love burning,
And poor Norah, though smiling still
She'd missed the snap-apple turning.
On the Festival of Hallow Eve.
This work, inspired by Fr. Horgan's annual Hallowe'en party at Blarney held the previous year (q.v.), included portraits of the artist's sisters, as well as Sir Walter Scott, Crofton Croker and Father Horgan. [W. G. Strickland, Vol. II, p. 67]
John Hogan was represented in the 1833 exhibition by only a portrait bust of a lady and a medallion, while the talented local artist James Beale showed two views in North Wales. John Brenan likewise showed landscapes (eight in all), of the Cork Harbour area, including Monkstown, looking towards Ringaskiddy from the new Road, Cork from Summerstown, View of Passage and Town of Cove, from over White Point. Brenan also showed at the RHA in 1833, but not those works he had shown in Cork that same year.
Another artist, 'D. McDaniel', showed a work entitled simply Composition; this was probably the same Landscape-Composition shown by Cork artist James McDaniel, at the previous year's RHA Annual Exhibition in Dublin. It is unlikely that 'D. McDaniel' refers to James McDaniel's son, Daniel MacDonald (1821-1853), as he was only 13 years of age at the time. However, both father and son were practicising artists in 1833: both contributing etchings to The Tribute, a volume of prose and poetry published in Cork in that year. Daniel's etchings were entitled When I was a Boy and The Justice Hall. [W. G. Strickland, Vol. II, p. 57]
The architect Henry Hill showed A Scene at Raffeen and A Scene at Passage,both 'painted on the spot',as well as Ballea Castle, while (not the Society Committee member )William James Morgan's Banditti and Landscape were his only two contributions to the exhibition. Amateur artist and long-serving Committee member E. Penrose, attracted, like many others of the day, to the beauties of Killarney, showed six views of that picturesque district, while the recently deceased Committee member and amateur, Webber Carleton, was represented by two views, 'from Nature'.
Amongst the newcomers, James Mahoney, then twenty-three years of age, was represented by three religious paintings, two of them inspired by Moor's Epicurean, including one depicting the persecution of Christians in ancient Rome, entitled Alethe before the Tribunal, while Richard Dunscombe Parker's Ogwen Pool, North Wales may have contained some of the meticulous depictions of birds for which this artist is now best known. Dunscombe Parker, descended from two old Cork landed families, was a gifted amateur artist, The Ulster Museum collection includes a folio of 170 large watercolours of 260 Irish birds, practically the artist's entire life's output, which show him to have been a gifted naturalist and watercolourist. Most of Dunscombe Parker's paintings depict the birds in their natural habitat; some of the background scenes, like that of Blarney Castle, are recognisable locations in Cork.
Louis King Bradford's two watercolours, both featuring Vivian Gray, had both been shown the previous year at the RHA's annual exhibition.
Other new names-- amateur artists for the most part--in the 1833 exhibition were; R. Varian, M. J. Cotter, M. Fouhy (portrait artist) J. Donovan and T. Falvey. The last-mentioned, Thomas Falvey, (fl. 1815-1833) who showed two paintings, entitled Family Group and A Girl Writing Poetry, and two portraits, is recorded by Strickland as having had a painting entitled Boys Bathing rejected by the Committee of a Cork exhibition some years previously. Hurt by this rejection,
Falvey had left Ireland to travel on the continent for two years, before returning to Cork. However, apart from a commission from Fr. Mathew to paint The Institution of the Order of St. Francis, he again was not greatly successful. One of the portraits he showed in Cork in 1833 was likely that of Counsellor Anthony Connell, which he had also shown the previous year at the RHA in Dublin. [W. G. Strickland, Vol. I, p. 330; A. Stewart, Vol. I, p. 249] Shortly after, Falvey emigrated to the United States, where he died soon after.
The miniaturist John Buckley was also represented in the 1833 exhibition, the only time his name occurs in these catalogues. Strickland describes Buckley as 'not an artist of any importance'. [W. G. Strickland, Vol. I, p. 124]
In the Second Room of the 1833 exhibition, amongst the works ascribed to Rembrandt, Domenechino, Raphael, 'Georgeona', Teniers and Vernet were included five landscapes by Butts; characteristic works by the eighteenth-century Cork artist, featuring figures and architectural ruins. There were three paintings by James Barry: The Prince of Wales (probably the large canvas now in the Crawford Gallery permanent collection entitled The Prince of Wales in the Guise of St. George), King Lear and Cordelia and Jupiter and Juno. Of the four paintings in the catalogue ascribed to Grogan, only one, Landscape, was attributed to 'Old Grogan' (Nathaniel Grogan the Elder), while the three others, Sophia Western, Composition; Irish Fair and Ballea Castle were simply listed as being by 'Grogan'. However, attentive readers will recollect that the first of these three, a scene inspired by the novel Tom Jones, had been included in the Society's original exhibition in 1815, where it was unequivocally ascribed to 'N. Grogan Snr.' The second, Irish Fair, was probably that painting Breaking up of the Fair, also shown by the Society eighteen years previously, and then also attributed to the elder Grogan. It would seem that even in the interval of less than two decades the business of confusing the various members of the Grogan family had begun in earnest. Other Irish artists included in this Second Room were Sadler and M. Crosbie, who was represented by a Bacchalian Sacrifice.
In 1833, the Belfast-born painter Andrew Nicholl, who exhibited eight landscapes at the RHA, gave his address as 'Cork'--the only year he was to do so. [A. Stewart, Vol. III, p. 9] None of the eight works depicted Cork scenes, although Nicholl was to exhibit several watercolours of Cork landscapes at the Academy, in 1835 and 1836.
In May 1833, the Irish Penny Journal contained a woodcut after a drawing by Cork artist Samuel West of The New Court-house, Cork. [W. G. Strickland, Vol. II, p. 518] In London, the death occured this year of miniaturist Adam Buck, born in Cork in 1759, who had practised for some years in his native city, before moving to England. [W. G. Strickland, Vol. I, p. 117] Buck is represented in the Crawford collection by one work, Tamburina (Cat. No. ***] which probably dates from 1799, when it was engraved.
At Killeagh, in 1833, Roger Green Davis built Dromdihy House, in a classical style. The architect of this house, with its Greek Doric portico, is unknown. [M. Bence-Jones, p. 296 (supplement); M. Craig, p. 255]
The portrait painter William Henry Collier RHA (c.1800-1847) transferred his practice from Dublin to Cork in 1834, advertising that he had studied for seven years with Sir Thomas Lawrence. [W. G. Strickland, Vol. I, p. 188] Collier was to return to Dublin shortly after, and no record has been found of his having exhibited in Cork during his time there.
Another portrait artist who transferred his practise to Cork in 1834, was the highly-successful silhouettist. Augustin Amant Constan Fidele Edouart (1789-1861), whose cut-out portraits were extremely popular at the time. The Cork Evening Herald of December 1834 informed its readers that "Monsieur Edouart, the celebrated, and, we may say, unique genius in his art, is doing wonders at the spirited town of Kinsale. The number of likenesses he has already taken is surprising for so small a place." [W. G. Strickland, Vol. I, p. 315] Edouart took rooms at 77 Patrick Street, from where he set off to Kinsale, Bandon, Youghal and other nearby towns, taking hundreds of portraits. While in Cork he employed Unkles and Klasen, 26 South Mall, to print lithographed background, on which he mounted his silhouettes. Edouart always cut his silhouettes out of doubled paper, and retained one copy in a set of bound volumes. When he was in Cork these volumes already contained over fifty-thousand silhouettes, but tragically the artist was to loose nearly all of these duplicates when he was shipwrecked, on his return to England from America, fifteen years later. The volume containing the portraits done in Cork was saved, however, and Strickland records that in 1913 it was in the possession of 'Messrs. Debenham, Wigmore Street, London'. [Ibid]
Reversing this trend of migration to Cork, the Fermoy-born artist John O'Keeffe (or O'Keefe) decided to move in 1834 to Dublin, where, over the next three years, he exhibited a total of twenty-one works, mainly portraits and Biblical paintings, at the RHA. Strickland records that O'Keeffe's Sybil 'his best production', was auctioned after the artist's premature death in 1838 to provide for his widow and children: 'It now hangs in the Museum in Cork'. [W. G. Strickland, Vol. II, p. 193; A. Stewart, Vol. III, p. 34]
The Dublin architect William Dean Butler exhibited, at the RHA in 1834, designs for a Roman Catholic Church, intended to be erected in Cork. [A. Stewart, Vol. I, p. 106]
A painter named G. W. Macready exhibited a view of Haulbowlin, Cove of Cork at the RHA annual exhibition. [A. Stewart, Vol. II, p. 248] There is no other record of Macready working in Cork.
A new Court House in Cork, with a gigantic Corinthian octostyle portico, was built to the designs of James and George Richard Pain. The interior of this building was gutted by fire in 1891, and subsequently rebuilt, although the original portico, with its three allegorical figures, Hibernia, Justice and Commerce by Thomas Kirk, still survives. [M. Craig, p. 272; Fitz-Simon, p. 130, states that it has also been attributed to Thomas Deane]
The painter Henry Watson (1822-1911), who had started his career as a coach painter in Cork and gone on to become a portrait painter, moved to Dublin to study at the Royal Hibernian Academy schools. [W. G. Strickland, Vol. II, p. 507]
St. Patrick's church on the Lower Glanmire Road was built to the designs of George Richard Pain. The original magnificent facade, with a noble Corinthian portico and pillared lantern, survives; the rest of the church having been subsequently rebuilt. [M. Craig, p. 261]
Cork architect Henry Hill exhibited eight architectural studies at the RHA in 1836, the only time he ever showed with the Academy. As well as views of buildings in France, Italy and England, there were drawings of the South Gate Bridge, Cork and The Tomb of the Kings of Munster, at Holy Cross Abbey.
Near Mallow, Co. Cork, a house named "Ballygiblin" was remodelled to the designs of William Vitruvius Morrison around 1836. The house, in a Tudor-Baronial style with a turret and spire, was flanked by a detached gothic orangery, with buttresses and pinnacles. [M. Bence-Jones, p. 22] Morrison is credited with the introduction of the Tudor Revival style into Ireland. His trips to Rome and Paestum, prompted in part by ill-health, had resulted in the robust classicism of his courthouse designs; however, his sources of inspiration for houses like Ballygiblin are less easy to identify. [M. Craig, p. 294]
In 1837, John Hogan became the first Irish or British artist to be elected a member of the Virtuosi del Pantheon, a society of artists founded in 1500, in Rome. [W. G. Strickland, Vol. I, p. 492]
In Cork, work began on the Savings Bank, a classical building constructed in white Ballintemple limestone and designed by Kearns Deane. [M. Craig, p. 262] The main Banking Hall of this elegant building, with its lavish plasterwork ceiling, was afterwards embellished with John Hogan's large memorial statue, carved in Rome in 1842, of William Crawford. Crawford had died in 1840, the same year the Savings Bank opened. The statue has since been transferred to the Crawford Art Gallery. (Cat. No. ***).
At a house named "Carrigrenane", Little Island, Co. Cork, the architect George Ashlin was born, in 1837. [M. Bence-Jones, p. 59]
At Mallow in north county Cork, Sir Denham Jephson-Norreys, M. P., extended and converted the old 16th century stable wing of Mallow Castle, producing an extremely convincing building in a late 16th century or early 17th century vernacular style, complete with carved oak chimneypieces and Elizabethan staircase. Jephson-Norreys is said to have acted as his own architect, although probably with assistance from Edward Blore. [M. Bence-Jones, p. 200]
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