William Wainwright

British, b.1855, d.1931

Portrait of Frank Bramley

  • 1881
  • Watercolour
  • Mr D.M.R. and Mrs H. Cameron Bequest, 1990
  • 720 x 690 x 60mm
  • 89/218

This portrait was completed while Frank Bramley (1857-1915) and William Wainwright were studying together at the Antwerp Academy. The men also shared a studio in Paris between 1882 and 1884. Bramley returned to England in 1884 and became a member of the Newlyn School of British artists. Wainwright has painted this portrait in a careful manner, paying particular attention to the carved details of the cabinet behind Bramley. His apprenticeship with John Hardman & Co., stained glass designers and cabinetmakers in Birmingham, would have proved valuable in giving him an understanding of carving such as this. Born in Birmingham, Wainwright studied at the Birmingham School of Art and at the School of Pugin. He was a founder of the Birmingham Art Circle in 1879 and a member of the Birmingham Society of Artists. After a short period in London and two years in Newlyn, Wainwright returned to Birmingham in 1886. For a time he directed the Life Academy at Birmingham School of Art.