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William Henry Romaine Walker ARIBA (1854-1940)

William Henry Romaine Walker, ARIBA (1854-1940)

William Henry Romaine Walker worked as both an architect and interior designer and a painter and illustrator, treating the second career as a diversion from the first. His watercolours, which he exhibited at his own family’s gallery, take a distinctively fresh and immediate approach to the tradition of fantasy subjects.

William Henry Romaine Walker was a member of the family of dealers who ran Walker’s Galleries. Following his schooling at Lancing College, he was articled for five years to one of the leading Victorian architects, George Edmund Street, who was near the end of his career. This resulted in his election in 1881 as an associate member of the Royal Institute of British Architects.

Walker then went into practice with Street’s manager, Augustus E Tanner, and together they worked as ecclesiastical restorers, most notably in additions to Wimborne Minster, Dorset. In 1887, they designed the Pitt-Rivers Museum in Oxford and, consequently, various buildings on the Pitt-Rivers estate at Tollard Royal, Wiltshire.

In 1893, Walker published
Mr Hipp or Three Friends In Search of Pleasure, a picture book with delightfully naive illustrations akin to the comic drawings of Edward Lear.

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