Chamberlin, Mason (DNB00)

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CHAMBERLIN, MASON (d. 1787), portrait painter, began life as a clerk in a counting-house. Afterwards showing a disposition towards art, he became the pupil of Frank Hayman, R.A. In spite of this circumstance he seems to have prospered, gaining in 1764 the Society of Arts second premium of fifty guineas for an historical painting. He lived in the neighbourhood of Spitalfields, and there practised as a portrait painter. 'His likenesses were faithful, very carefully drawn and painted, but his colouring was thin, monotonous, and unpleasant' (Redgrave). He was a member of the Incorporated Society of Artists, and an original member of the Royal Academy. He was honoured by the attention of Peter Pindar (Dr. Wolcot) in the first of his Academy Odes. He was a frequent exhibitor in London galleries from 1760 to 1787. Twenty-two of his portraits were seen at the rooms of the Society of Artists, fifty at the Royal Academy, and two at the 'Free Society.' He painted portraits exclusively. One of Dr. Hunter, his presentation picture, is in the 'diploma gallery' of the Royal Academy ; another, a portrait of Dr. Chandler, is in the rooms of the Royal Society. Both of these have been engraved. In later life he moved from Spitalfields to Bartlett's Buildings, Holborn, and there died 20 Jan. 1787. His son, Mason Chamberlin, was a prolific painter, and exhibited sixty-eight landscapes in London from 1780 to 1827, of which fifty-eight were exhibited at the Royal Academy.

[Redgrave's Dict. of Eng. School; Graves's Dict. of Artists.]

E. R.