William Conor (Irish, 1881-1968, RUA, RHA) crayon and oil on paper painting depicting a woman and two men walking greyhound dogs. Two signatures, one in the lower left margin and the other 5" above the first signature. Housed in a carved gilt wood frame. Sight – 28 3/4" H x 23 3/4" W. Framed – 38" H x 33" W. Provenance: The Living Estate of Rita Whittle, Maryville, TN. Biography: William Conor was born in Belfast, the son of a sheet metal worker, and is noted for his sympathetic portrayals of working class life. At the age of 10, his chalk drawings were noticed by a teacher who arranged for him to attend the Government School of Design in Belfast. After school, he worked as a commercial artist and an official war artist during the First World War. In 1920 Conor moved to London, where he met and became good friends with Sir John Lavery and Augustus John and started exhibiting at the Royal Academy. He also exhibited at the Royal Hibernian Academy (RHA), and in 1930 was one of the first Academicians when the Belfast Art Society was renamed the Ulster Academy of Arts. He was the first Irish artist to gain membership to the Royal Institute of Oil Painters, and he was elected President of the Royal Ulster Academy (RUA) in 1957. His works are represented in several public collections including the Ulster Museum in Belfast and the Limerick Gallery of Art. (Source: Online Encyclopedia of Irish and World Art). Sporting subjects were a frequent theme for Conor. A very similar oil on canvas painting, for which this work may have been a study, sold at Christie's London on May 10, 2007. CONDITION: Paper has been laid down on chip board substrate and lightly varnished. Two significant repaired tears with inpainting (evident under black light): left side "L" shaped tear 11 1/2" horizontal and 8 1/2" vertical; right side 13" L. horizontal. Two minor 1" repaired tears at top edge left and right of center. Crease lines down left leg of center dog. Some light scratching.
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