Gilpin, William Sawrey (DNB00)

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GILPIN, WILLIAM SAWREY (1762–1843), water-colour painter and landscape gardener, born in 1762, was son of Sawrey Gilpin, R.A. [q. v.] He practised as a water-colour painter and drawing-master, and his father's reputation enabled him to obtain considerable practice. He exhibited a view of the ‘Village of Rydal, Westmoreland’ at the Royal Academy in 1797, and in 1800 sent ‘A Park Scene.’ So high did Gilpin stand in his profession, that at the original meeting of water-colour painters on 30 Nov. 1804, at which the Old Water-colour Society was founded, he was voted to the chair, and elected the first president of the society. The inferior quality of his work as a painter was, however, very evident at the first exhibition in 1805, and he resigned the post of president in 1806, after filling it with great ability. Gilpin was appointed drawing-master to the branch of the Royal Military College at Great Marlow, and subsequently at Sandhurst. He continued a member of the Water-colour Society, and was one of the members who seceded in 1813, but he continued to exhibit up to 1814. Later on in life he seems to have devoted himself entirely to landscape gardening, and obtained almost a monopoly of the chief practice in it. His principal works were in Ireland at Crum Castle, Enniskillen Castle, and the seats of Lord Cawdor and Lord Blayney; in England he laid out the gardens at Danesfield, near Henley-on-Thames, and at Sir E. Kerrison's seat near Hoxne, Suffolk. In 1832 he published, with plates, ‘Practical Hints for Landscape Gardening, with some remarks on Domestic Architecture as connected with Scenery’ (2nd ed. 1835). Gilpin died at Sedbergh Park, Yorkshire, aged 81. He left two sons by his wife, Elizabeth Paddock.

[Redgraves' Century of Painters, i. 469; Redgrave's Dict. of Artists; Gent. Mag. 1843, new ser. xx. 209; Gilpin's Memoirs of Dr. R. Gilpin.]

L. C.