G. W. Joy was born in Dublin, and as a young man was torn between the idea of being an artist or being a violin player. Art won, and he studied under Herkomer, and then at the Royal Academy Schools. He then worked under Jalabart and Bonnat in Paris before returning to England where he lived in Bayswater, London. He had several tough years before he began to sell his pictures well in about 1890. His paintings covered a variety of themes - genre pictures of contemporary life such as The Bayswater Bus, historical pictures including a good Joan of Arc, classical nudes such as Truth, The Danaiads and Laodamia, and portraits.
General Gordon's Last Stand, and a Cordelia comforting her father in prison are in Leeds.
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