Sir George Clausen R.A, R.W.S., R.I.



Artist's Biography & Works For Sale


George Clausen was born in London to a Scottish mother and a Danish father. At the age of sixteen he worked as a draughtsman in a firm of decorators in London before winning a scholarship to the South Kensington Schools where he began his artistic training under the painter Edwin Long. This was then followed by a brief period of study on the continent in Antwerp and Paris under Bouguereau and Tony Robert-Fleury at the Académie Julian.

Clausen’s paintings were predominately concerned with landscape and 'the life of the country labourer, his actions and the land he works on … a literal truth raised to a higher power by his sense of design and his lyrical feeling for the beauty of light.’ (Hussey, D.George Clausen, London, 1923). In D. H. Lawrence's ‘The Peacock’ (1911) Clausen is described as 'a real realist; he makes common things beautiful, he sees the mystery and magnificence that envelops us even when we work menially’.

Amongst his other accomplishments, Sir George was a founder member of The New English Art Club in 1886, that same year he was elected in the Royal Institute of Painters in Watercolours. He was elected Associate of the Royal Academy in 1895, and a full Academician in 1906. As Professor of Painting at the RA his popular series of lectures were later published as ‘Six Lectures on Painting’ (1904) and ‘Aims and Ideals in Art’ (1906). During WW1 Clausen was an official war artist and also a parliamentary muralist. In 1926 he received a commission for a large mural for St. Stephen’s Hall in the House of Commons, and on its unveiling the following year received a knighthood. Clausen continued to enjoy a successful career until his death in 1944, at the age of ninety-two. 

Sir George Clausen’s paintings are found in private collections and numerous museums worldwide.