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Francis Wheatley RA (1747-1801)

Francis Wheatley is best known as a painter of landscapes, portraits and figures in a sentimental and pretty style. His most popular and notable works were the Cries of London, a series of fourteen paintings of London street scenes which were then engraved and published in pairs.

Wheatley was born in London in 1747 and was the son of a Master Tailor. He was introduced to the study of drawing via his neighbour, Daniel Fournier, a drawing-master and artist. His father then moved him to William Shipley’s Academy in London, a prodigious drawing school which later became Ackermann's Repository of Arts. During his time studying at Shipley’s, Francis Wheatley was awarded several prizes by the Society of Arts, including a prize for figurative drawing for students under the age of sixteen.

Francis Wheatley first exhibited with the Society of Artists in 1765 with
Portrait of a Gentleman, and later became a member in 1770 and then director in 1774.

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