Arthur Wardle

1864 – 1949

(RI., RBA)

He was born in London the son of Alfred and Sarah Elizabeth Wardle he lived at 34 Alma Square, St. John’s Wood, London.

Arthur Wardle lived and worked in London. By the unusually young age of sixteen he began exhibiting his work at the Royal Academy. His first exhibit was a study of cattle on the banks of the Thames and this was the start of his life long interest in painting animals.

Largely self-taught, Wardle received no academic training yet he became one of the pre-eminent animal and sporting painters of his generation.

In 1880 Wardle lived in Oakley Square, Camden, in North London, but such was his artistic success he was able to move to the more fashionable Alma Square in St. John’s Wood by 1892. Between 1880 and 1938 Wardle exhibited frequently at the Royal Academy and other venues. He painted both domestic and wild game; his more exotic subjects, such as leopards, tigers and polar bears were painted from ‘on the spot’ sketches which he made during his visits to London Zoo.

As well as oil painting, Wardle worked extensively in watercolour and pastel and was elected to the Pastel Society in 1911 and became a member of the Royal Institute of Painters in Watercolour in 1922. In 1931 he held his first one man exhibition at the Fine Art Society and in 1935 the Vicar’s Gallery held an exhibition devoted to his work. Wardle also exhibited in Paris.

By 1936 the artist was living in West London. His career had been highly successful and his works continue to be sought after. He remains one of the foremost animal painters of the period. Wardle died on 16th July, 1949.
He became the Queens Painter and his works have been in the Victoria and Albert Museum, the Tate Gallery and Leeds City Art Gallery among many other galleries and museums.

Exhibited at:
Agnew & Sons Gallery
Royal Society of Artists, Birmingham x 32
Dudley Art Gallery x 8
Fine Art Society x 49
Glasgow Institute of the Fine Arts
Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool x 58
Manchester City Art Gallery x 17
Royal Academy x 113
Royal Society of British Artists x 26
Royal Hibernian Academy x 5
Royal Institute of Watercolours x 95
Royal Institute of Oil Painters x 27
Royal Scottish Academy

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