Dictionary of National Biography, 1885-1900/Davis, Richard Barrett

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DAVIS, RICHARD BARRETT (1782–1854), animal painter, was born at Watford, Hertfordshire, in 1782. His father was huntsman to the royal harriers. George III took notice of some of his drawings, and placed him under Sir William Beechey, R.A. [q. v.] At nineteen he became a student of the Royal Academy. He first exhibited in 1802, sending a landscape to the academy. For fifty years from that time he was a very constant exhibitor. To the academy he sent 70 pictures, to the British Institute 57, and to the Suffolk Street Exhibition 141. He last exhibited in 1853. He took early to animal painting. In 1806 he sent to the academy ‘Mares and Foals from the Royal Stud at Windsor,’ and ‘The Portrait of an Old Hunter;’ in 1814, ‘Going to Market;’ in 1821, a ‘Horse Fair;’ in 1831, ‘Travellers attacked by Wolves.’ In that year he was appointed animal painter to William IV, and painted the cavalcade which formed the coronation procession of that monarch. In 1829 he joined the Suffolk Street Society, and was one of its most constant exhibitors. He died on 13 March 1854.

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

E. R.