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primroseKEELEY HALSWELLE - ARTIST.
Keeley Halswelle
primrose

Keeley Halswelle, R.I., R.O.I., A.R.S.A. was born of Scottish parents in Brentford, Surrey on the 23rd. April 1831 and died on April 12, 1891 in Paris. His remains were interred in a vault in the quiet little churchyard at Steep, near Petersfield, Hampshire where he had lived towards the end of his life. The Petersfield Habitation of the Primrose League, of which the deceased was ruling councillor, sent a massive wreath of primroses.
After studying in Edinburgh and at the British Museum he began his career as an illustrator, and from 1860, onwards, worked for a number of magazines including the 'Illustrated London News'.
He was elected an Associate of the Royal Scottish Academy in 1865 and in 1868 he went on the first of his many visits to Italy and Paris, painting peasant subjects in both oil and watercolour, many of which were exhibited at the Royal Academy.
In the 1880's he abandoned figure paintings and turned almost entirely to Highland landscapes and views on the River Thames and it is for the latter of these subjects he is best known.
He became a member of the Royal Institute of Painters in Watercolour in 1882, and the Royal Institute of Oil Painters in 1883. His paintings have been displayed in museums in Dublin, Glasgow, Leeds, London, Manchester, Melbourne, Salford and Sydney. Examples of his works may be seen in the Victoria and Albert Museum, London and the National Galleries of both Ireland and Scotland.
He exhibited between 1862-1891 and a few examples of his work are shown below.
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I am indebted to Mr. Michael Stewart for supplying an extract from the TIMES (Tuesday, April 21, 1891 p.9 Col.f) detailing Halswelle's standing with the Primrose League and for correcting his place and date of birth and date of death, as will normally be found wrongly published.
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