CHARLES WALTER SIMPSON RI ROI RBA

(1885-1971)

 

A painter of birds, animals, landscapes and seascapes, figures and portraits in oils, watercolours and tempera, and also an illustrator and author, Charles Simpson was largely self-taught, although he did study for a while with Lucy Kemp-Welch and Bushey and painted with Munnings in Norfolk.  In 1905 he settled in Cornwall, taking lessons from J Noble Barlow and establishing a studio in Newlyn, and in 1910 he visited Paris and attended the Academie Julian.  In 1916/17 he moved to St Ives and ran a painting school with his wife Ruth Simpson and in 1924 he settled in London, returning to Cornwall in 1931.  His first solo exhibition was at the Graphic Society, London, in 1910, and he exhibited in leading galleries (at the RA from 1906), and widely in other societies and abroad.  He was elected RI and RBA in 1914 and ROI in 1923 and his work is represented in public collections including the Lain Art Gallery, Newcastle.  Many of his early paintings were large-scale farming and animal scenes and from 1924 he was known for his hunting and equestrian scenes for the RA.  His work reveals his mastery of light and reflections and his direct, open painting technique.