William Bowyer (artist)
William Bowyer RA (25 May 1926 – 1 March 2015) was a British portrait and landscape painter, who worked in a traditional manner.
Life and work
In 1963, he won the City of London Art Award. 1971–82, he was Head of Fine Art at Maidstone College of Art. In 1988, the National Portrait Gallery acquired his portraits of miners´ leader, Arthur Scargill, and cricketer, Viv Richards. The same year the MCC commissioned him to paint the bi-centenary game at Lord's.
His work was "modern traditional" figurative painting. Strong influences come from predecessors such as John Constable and J.M.W. Turner. Landscapes concentrate on the River Thames and the Suffolk coast. His love of cricket also leads to subject matter.
Ken Howard RA has commented:
The content of his pictures is the artist's life, whether it be his beloved river at Hammersmith, Walberswick in Suffolk – where he escapes whenever possible – his friends and family, as seen in his strong and challenging portraits, or his life-long love of cricket. Bill Bowyer's work communicates with us directly. It gives us a way of seeing the world and above all it is life enhancing.
He was elected an Associate of the Royal Academy of Arts (ARA) in 1973 and a Royal Academician (RA) in 1981. His memberships include the Royal Watercolour Society and the Royal Society of Portrait Painters. He was Honoured Secretary (President) of the New English Art Club for 30 years.
His work is in collections including the Royal Academy of Arts, the Arts Council of Great Britain, Vancouver Art Gallery, Canada, Huffman and Boyle, New Jersey, the Museum at Lord's Cricket Ground, and The Prince of Wales Collection.
He died on 1 March 2015.
Notes and references
- "William Bowyer RA" Royal Academy. Retrieved 22 January 2007
- Buckman, David. Dictionary of Artists in Britain since 1945, p.174. Art Dictionaries, Bristol, 2006
- "William Bowyer", New English Art Club. Retrieved 22 January 2007
- William Bowyer obituary