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Lifespan: 1727 - 1788
Nationality: English painter
Gender: male
Collection: 123 paintings

Thomas Gainsborough was an eighteenth century English painter. He was born in Sudbury, in Suffolk, England in the year of 1727 into a middle class family. Gainsborough showed an early interest in art and was sent to London in 1740 in order to gain artistic skills by studying with first Hubert Gravelot as an assistant, then William Hogarth, and eventually Francis Hayman. Later he would marry the illegitimate daughter of a Duke, and receive two-hundred pounds per year as income from the marriage. This extra financial boost allowed Gainsborough to continue with the creation of his paintings despite limited success, particularly early in his career. In order to boost the sales of his paintings, the shift of the paintings of Thomas Gainsborough moved from portrayals of landscape to the art of portraiture. The qualities of the oil paintings of Thomas Gainsborough that set him apart from struggling artists who were his contemporaries was that Gainsborough’s early paintings exhibits a much more mature method of signifying light while painting a landscape subject which was a fusion of reality and the invented composition that he set forth to heighten the effectiveness of the work as a whole. Later, Thomas Gainsborough paintings became synonymous with portraiture in Bath, England where he moved to secure a greater number of commissions due to the decreased competition there than in the bustling city of London. His goal was met as he discovered the portraits of the Dutch artist Van Dyck which he used as a clear source of inspiration for his own portraiture. This influence came to pay off in Thomas Gainsborough oil paintings because he soon adapted the style to his own methods of work which resulted in a new informality, but reminiscent of the rococo movement in art. However, the actual method for Gainsborough’s painting is slightly different in that he believed in the creation of his artwork based more upon what he saw than by the Classical examples of painting. In this way, Gainsborough has early Impressionist tendencies, but is clearly an artist who lived and painted much before the idea of Impressionism was even conceived as a movement in art. Some of the crowning achievements in the artwork of Thomas Gainsborough were in the genre in which he started his practice of art: landscape paintings. Through out his career, Gainsborough experimented with landscape paintings, even creating small-scale models of his subjects to practice painting in all different versions of light. It was this freshness of practice that gave Gainsborough such a command of portraying light and leaning toward a more abstract style than many of his contemporaries; though his work could not be considered abstract by today’s definitions. Some of the most well-known and significant paintings of Gainsborough’s career are titled: The Act Directs, The Blue Boy, Mary and Margaret: The Painter’s Daughters, Mr. and Mrs. Andrews, Portrait of Mrs. Graham, Cottage Girl with Dog and Pitcher, Gainsborough’s Forest, Karl Frederick Abel, Mary, Countess Howe, Young Hobbinol and Ganderetta, Mr. and Mrs. George Byam, and The Morning Walk. Thomas Gainsborough artwork remains today an interesting and relevant study in the history of English art.


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Blue Boy Paintings | Thomas Gainsborough paintings

Blue Boy

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Captain William Wade 1771 Paintings | Thomas Gainsborough paintings

Captain William Wade 1771

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Carl Friedrich Abel 1777 Paintings | Thomas Gainsborough paintings

Carl Friedrich Abel 1777

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Coastal Scene A Calm 1783 Paintings | Thomas Gainsborough paintings

Coastal Scene A Calm 1783

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Conversation In A Park 1740 Paintings | Thomas Gainsborough paintings

Conversation In A Park 1740

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Conversation in a Park 1740 Paintings | Thomas Gainsborough paintings

Conversation in a Park 1740

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Diana And Actaeon 1785 Paintings | Thomas Gainsborough paintings

Diana And Actaeon 1785

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Dogs Chasing A Fox 1784-1785 Paintings | Thomas Gainsborough paintings

Dogs Chasing A Fox 1784-1785

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Dr Isaac Henrique Sequeira 1775 Paintings | Thomas Gainsborough paintings

Dr Isaac Henrique Sequeira 1775

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Dupont 1770s Paintings | Thomas Gainsborough paintings

Dupont 1770s

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Edward 2nd Viscount Ligonier Exhibited R A 1771 Paintings | Thomas Gainsborough paintings

Edward 2nd Viscount Ligonier Exhibited R A 1771

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Edward Richard Gardiner 1760-1768 Paintings | Thomas Gainsborough paintings

Edward Richard Gardiner 1760-1768

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Forest (Cornard Wood) 1746-1747 Paintings | Thomas Gainsborough paintings

Forest (Cornard Wood) 1746-1747

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George Prince Of Wales Later George Iv 1782 Paintings | Thomas Gainsborough paintings

George Prince Of Wales Later George Iv 1782

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Georgiana Duchess Of Devonshire 1783 Paintings | Thomas Gainsborough paintings

Georgiana Duchess Of Devonshire 1783

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Giovanna Baccelli Exhibited R A 1782 Paintings | Thomas Gainsborough paintings

Giovanna Baccelli Exhibited R A 1782

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Girl With Pigs 1782 Paintings | Thomas Gainsborough paintings

Girl With Pigs 1782

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Heneage Lloyd And His Sister 1750s Paintings | Thomas Gainsborough paintings

Heneage Lloyd And His Sister 1750s

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Henry Frederick Duke Of Cumberland 1777 Paintings | Thomas Gainsborough paintings

Henry Frederick Duke Of Cumberland 1777

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Herdsmen Driving Cattle towards a Post Paintings | Thomas Gainsborough paintings

Herdsmen Driving Cattle towards a Post

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Isabella Viscountess Molyneux 1769 Paintings | Thomas Gainsborough paintings

Isabella Viscountess Molyneux 1769

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Johann Christian Bach 1776 Paintings | Thomas Gainsborough paintings

Johann Christian Bach 1776

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Johann Christian Fischer 1780 Paintings | Thomas Gainsborough paintings

Johann Christian Fischer 1780

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Johann Christian Fischer Exhibited R A 1780 Paintings | Thomas Gainsborough paintings

Johann Christian Fischer Exhibited R A 1780

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John 10th Viscount Kilmorey 1768 Paintings | Thomas Gainsborough paintings

John 10th Viscount Kilmorey 1768

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