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English Provincial School

Admiral Lord Exmouth

circa 1815
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Born in 1757, Edward Pellew joined the Royal Navy as a mid-shipman at the age of thirteen. He first saw action in the war of American Independence and from then on gained rapid promotion, being knighted in 1793 and becoming a popular hero during the Napoleonic Wars. Greatly admired for his courage, gallantry and goodness of heart, he became the first Viscount Exmouth in 1814. He died in 1833. The artwork is inscribed ‘The Apearanc of Admarll Lord Exmouth from his Hedgecumb Park’. The flattened perspective, and the inclusion of various objects out of scale with each other, are typical of folk art ‘story-telling’. 

Pellow is placed in the centre of the image and his wealth and status are suggested to those looking at this painting by the unconscious comparison between his large figure and the miniature furniture around him.  In the middle is an elegant marble stairway which serves no real purpose and is just a stage prop.  A fenced horizontal path splits the picture into two and the stairway stops here to allow a direct view of the deer park.  The hearts around the edges of the artwork suggest it may have been given as a love token.

Encourage the pupils to discuss the ‘story’ - what is the artist showing us in this painting?
Use the style of this image to inspire your pupils to make a folk art image of someone they admire, whether it be a family member or someone famous.
English Provincial School, Admiral Lord Exmouth, 1815
Materials and technique: Ink, watercolour and gouache on paper
Dimensions: 66 x 54.2 cm
Compton Verney: CVCSC:0011.F
Colour and Technique
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