Note:  Do not rely on this information. It is very old.


Bonington, Richard Parkes (1801-1828), an English painter born at the little village of Arnold near Nottingham. His father, who taught him to draw, came in 1816 with his family to France, and here Richard Parkes Bonington entered into the studio of Baron Gros in 1819. Caring little, however, for academic studies he soon quitted Gros to go and study the great Flemish landscape masters in the Louvre, and from them learnt that nature is the best master. He went into Normandy and brought back some fine water-colours, and at the Salon of 1824 he exhibited his water-colour, View of Abbeville - and four oil-colours, View in Flanders, A Sandy Shore, and two sea pieces. These works won for him a gold medal. After a trip to England he went in 1826 to Italy, and especially to Venice, where he painted what some consider his masterpieces - View of the Ducal Palace and View of the Grand Canal. At the height of his fame, when he was projecting a work on a large scale, he was seized by a brain fever, or, as some say, by sunstroke, and though he tried to work it down, his efforts were vain, and it killed him. Eugene Delacroix, in criticising his painting, cannot too much admire his wonderful grasp of effect and ease of execution, and M. Burger considers him little, if at all, inferior as a landscape painter in delicacy of touch and harmony of colour to Gainsborough, to Constable, or to Turner.