George Percy Jacomb-Hood RBA RE (1857-1929)

The painter George Percy Jacomb-Hood was born in Redhill, Surrey. He won a scholarship at the Slade School, and subsequently worked in Paris under J.P. Laurens. He then returned to England, making his base in London with a studio in Fulham. From 1877 he exhibited at the Royal Academy, and he also showed work at the Paris Salon and elsewhere. He was an original member of the New English Art Club.

Jacomb-Hood painted mythological scenes and contemporary genre, always concentrating on the figures in his pictures. As well, he was a fair portrait painter. He also worked as an illustrator in the monthly magazines, especially for the Graphic, which sent him to Greece in 1896, and Delhi in 1902. His illustrative work can be hard to spot because he used more than one variant of his signature. He was back in India for the tour by the Prince and Princess of Wales in 1905, and went with George V back to India in 1911. For this reason, he had a large output of Indian portraits as well as English ones.

As well as painting and illustration, Jacomb-Hood made etchings, and in 1891 showed two bronzes at the Royal Academy.

Among Jacomb-Hood's best paintings are The Triumph of Spring, showing a processional, and a suggestively mythological Mother and Child. That picture is at the Victoria Art Gallery, Bath, where also may be found a Gypsy Encampment. The Butler (1910) is in the collection of the Bristol Art Gallery. Portraits by Jacomb-Hood include Victor Cavendish Bentinck in the collection of the Manchester Art Gallery, F. S. Hayden at the National Portrait Gallery, Portrait of the Artist's Sister at the Walker Art Gallery and Robinson Ellis at Trinity College, Oxford. A good beach scene and other work is at Hove. Two pictures are at the Lady Lever Gallery - one of these (The Lifeboat) was used to advertise Pears Soap.

Apparently there remain various pictures by Jacomb-Hood in India, including three portraits of members of the Tagore family in the Rabindra Bharati Museum in Calcutta, and a Lord Lytton in the Victoria Hall Museum, also in Calcutta.

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