Clarkson Frederick Stanfield was born in Sunderland on 3 December 1793. He was the son of James Field Stanfield, an author and actor of Irish descent and Mary Hoad, an artist and actress. Stanfield was named after Thomas Clarkson, the slave trade abolitionist who was a friend of his father.
Initially, he was apprenticed to a coach decorator but then became a sailor where he developed his knowledge and love of the sea. After an accident forced him to leave the navy, he started working as a scene painter at the Royalty Theatre in London and then at the Theatre Royal Drury Lane, where he became famous for his spectacular scenery and moving dioramas. In his spare time he worked on marine scenes and began regularly exhibiting at the Royal Academy from 1820. After the death of his first wife he married Rebecca Adcock. One of their sons, George Clarkson Stanfield (1828-1878) also became an artist.
In 1824, he became a founder member of the Society of British Artists where he also exhibited and was elected president in 1829. He also exhibited at the British Institution. Stanfield was elected Associate Member of the Royal Academy in 1832 and became a full Academician in February 1835. By this time, he had become a full-time artist and only painted scenery for his friends William Charles Macready and Charles Dickens.
As well as touring Britain to paint seascapes he also visited France, Germany and Italy. He was a highly respected artist in his lifetime, winning critical acclaim and had many notable patrons including William IV. He died on 18 May 1867 at Hampstead, London. A retrospective exhibition of his work was held at the first Royal Academy Winter Exhibition in 1873.
Examples of his work can be found in many collections including the Glasgow Museum, Royal Collection, Sheffield Museum, Sunderland Museum and Art Gallery, V&A, the Wallace Collection, Watford Museum and the Tate.
The work is housed in its original period gilt frame, which is in excellent condition.
|Image Size||15.75 inches x 23.75 inches (40cm x 60.5cm)|
|Framed Size||25.25 inches x 33.25 inches (64cm x 84.5cm)|