John Flaxman

All Sources -
Updated Media sources (1) About content Print Topic Share Topic
views updated

Flaxman, John (1755–1826). English sculptor, designer, and book illustrator. He studied at the Royal Academy Schools, before working as a designer for Josiah Wedgwood. In 1787 Flaxman travelled to Italy to study. During the seven years he spent there, he drew illustrations for the Iliad, the Odyssey, and works of Dante and Aeschylus, which earned him an international reputation. On his return to England he was immediately in demand as a sculptor of monuments and figures; among the best known are those to Lord Mansfield in Westminster abbey and Lord Nelson in St Paul's, although his work can be found in many churches, cathedrals, stately homes, and galleries throughout Britain. Appointed RA in 1800, he became the first professor of sculpture in 1812. He continued to draw book illustrations, some of which were engraved by his friend William Blake, and designs for silverware. Much of his work is held at University College, London.

June Cochrane

views updated

John Flaxman, 1755–1826, English sculptor and draftsman. At 20 he went to work for Josiah Wedgwood, designing the cameolike decorations for Wedgwood's pottery. Later, in Rome, he devoted himself to sculpture and produced outline figure drawings from Greek vases as illustrations for works of Homer, Dante, Aeschylus, and Hesiod. These were engraved by his friend William Blake. He is well known for his neoclassical memorial sculpture of Sir Joshua Reynolds, Admiral Earl Howe, and Lord Nelson (all: St. Paul's Cathedral).