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James Thomas Watts RBSA, RCamA (1853-1930)

As a follower of John Ruskin and the paintings of the Pre-Raphaelites, James Thomas Watts dedicated himself to painting the truth of nature, particularly through woodland landscapes. Best known for this narrow range of subject matter, he meticulously explored these scenes through the different seasons and times of day, in order to develop subtleties of light that produced astonishingly atmospheric works.

James Thomas Watts was born in Birmingham and educated in the city at King Edward’s School and the Birmingham School of Art. As he became familiar with the writings of John Ruskin and the paintings of the Pre-Raphaelites, he held fast to the principle of truth to nature, and applied it in particular to woodland landscapes. While working within what was a narrow range of subject matter, he explored its every aspect through the seasons and at different times of day, and represented the most subtle effects of light with astonishing atmosphere and detail. After his move to Liverpool, in about 1874, he painted mainly in North Wales and North-West England, though also visited the North-East, Scotland and even the Low Countries.

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Subject Category

Bridges & Viaducts (1)

Seasons & Weather
Season: Autumn (2)

British Counties & Regions
Sussex (1)

Countries & Regions
Wales (1)

Woods & Forests (2)