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William Wyld AA RI (1806-1889)

William Wyld, AA RI (1806-1889)

A diplomat and then a wine merchant, William Wyld was inspired by the example of Richard Parkes Bonington to become a watercolourist. His strongly coloured, virtuoso townscapes and landscapes proved highly influential in the development of watercolour in France.

The son of a businessman, William Wyld was born in London. He entered the diplomatic service, acting as Secretary to the British Consul in Calais, a position previously held by Louis Francia who, still living in Calais, gave him lessons in painting. Through Francia and John Lewis Brown, Bordeaux wine merchant and art collector, he was introduced to the work of Richard Parkes Bonington. Absorbing Bonington’s influence, he would, in turn, affect the development of watercolour in France.

In 1827, Wyld took charge of a wine business in Epernay, and there began to find patrons for his watercolours.

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