Artist biography


Painter of history, portraits and genre, also illustrator. Born at Exeter, Devon, 1708, died London 2 February 1776. Apprenticed to the history painter Robert Brown 1718. First employed as scenery painter at Drury Lane, became leading historical painter by mid-1730s. From c. 1741 well-known through his decorative paintings for Vauxhall Gardens. Taught at St Martin's Lane Academy in 1740s, and his French-influenced Rococo style was readily absorbed by the young Gainsborough. In 1743–4 collaborated with Gravelot on the illustrations for Hanmer's Shakespeare. Visited France 1748. President of the SA 1766–8, Foundation Member of the RA 1768, became its Librarian 1771. Exhibited SA 1760–8, RA 1769–72.

LITERATURE Brian Allen, ‘Francis Hayman and the English Rococo’, PhD thesis, Courtauld Institute, 1984; Brian Allen, Francis Hayman, New Haven and London 1987

EXHIBITIONS Francis Hayman, Yale, New Haven, and Kenwood 1987

Published in:
Elizabeth Einberg and Judy Egerton, The Age of Hogarth: British Painters Born 1675-1709, Tate Gallery Collections, II, London 1988