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In Photos: Remembering photographer Frederick Hollyer

June 17, 2016 /Photography News/ Born 178 years ago today, on 17 June 1838, Frederick Hollyer was an English photographer and engraver known for his photographic reproductions of paintings and drawings, particularly those of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood, and for portraits of literary and artistic figures of late Victorian and Edwardian London.

Hollyer became interested in photography about 1860. Under the patronage of painter and sculptor Frederic Leighton, Hollyer began to photograph paintings and drawings in the 1870s. Artists whose work he published include Edward Burne-Jones, George Frederic Watts, Simeon Solomon, and Dante Gabriel Rossetti.

Hollyer's photographs of drawings were particularly successful; printed on high-quality paper, they were often mistaken for originals. One of the most popular was a study of three heads by Burne-Jones for The Masque of Cupid.

Hollyer also took studio portraits and specialized in interior and exterior photos of houses. For 30 years, he reserved Mondays for portrait photography in his Pembroke Square studio. His sitters included the artists Walter Crane, William Morris, G. F. Watts, and Burne-Jones; the writers John Ruskin, H. G. Wells, and George Bernard Shaw; and the actresses Mrs Patrick Campbell and Ellen Terry.

Hollyer eschewed the formal poses of most studio portraiture of his day.

Hollyer joined the Royal Photographic Society 1865 and became a Fellow in 1895, but was also involved in The Linked Ring, a society formed in to support pictorialism in opposition to the Photographic Society. He was a member of the Solar Club and became one of the Founder Members of the Professional Photographers' Association in 1901.

Frederick Hollyer died 21 November 1933 at his eldest son's home in Blewbury (then part of Berkshire), aged 95. (Source: Wikipedia)

Self-portrait of Frederick Hollyer, from the journal Photograms of '95. London: Dawbarn & Ward, 1895 About 1890. Platinum print, width 9.5 cm x height 7.7 cm
Self-portrait of Frederick Hollyer, from the journal Photograms of '95. London: Dawbarn & Ward, 1895 About 1890. Platinum print, width 9.5 cm x height 7.7 cm

Portrait of John Ruskin by Frederick Hollyer, 1894.
Portrait of John Ruskin by Frederick Hollyer, 1894.

Platinum print photographic portrait of Bowyer Nichols, J. W. Mackail, and H. C. Breeding, c. 1882. Scanned from The Earthly Paradise: Arts and Crafts by Wiliam Morris and his Circle in Canadian Collections, edited by Katharine A. Lochnan, Douglas E. Schoenherr, and Carole Silver, Key Porter Books, 1993
Platinum print photographic portrait of Bowyer Nichols, J. W. Mackail, and H. C. Breeding, c. 1882. Scanned from The Earthly Paradise: Arts and Crafts by Wiliam Morris and his Circle in Canadian Collections, edited by Katharine A. Lochnan, Douglas E. Schoenherr, and Carole Silver, Key Porter Books, 1993

Portrait of William Morris, aged 53. First published 1899 (photo c. 1887)
Portrait of William Morris, aged 53. First published 1899 (photo c. 1887)

Platinum print photographic portrait of Georgiana Burne-Jones, c. 1882. Scanned from The Earthly Paradise: Arts and Crafts by Wiliam Morris and his Circle in Canadian Collections, edited by Katharine A. Lochnan, Douglas E. Schoenherr, and Carole Silver, Key Porter Books, 1993
Platinum print photographic portrait of Georgiana Burne-Jones, c. 1882. Scanned from The Earthly Paradise: Arts and Crafts by Wiliam Morris and his Circle in Canadian Collections, edited by Katharine A. Lochnan, Douglas E. Schoenherr, and Carole Silver, Key Porter Books, 1993

The families of William Morris and Edward Burne-Jones, photographed by Frederick Hollyer in the garden at The Grange, Burne-Jones's home in Fulham. Left to right: Edward Jones (Burne-Jones's father), Margaret Burne-Jones, Edward Burne-Jones, Philip Burne-Jones, Georgiana Burne-Jones, May Morris, William Morris, Jane Morris, and Jenny Morris. Platinotype photograph, 14 x 13.1 cm, 1874. Scanned from Linda Parry, William Morris, Abrams 1996
The families of William Morris and Edward Burne-Jones, photographed by Frederick Hollyer in the garden at The Grange, Burne-Jones's home in Fulham. Left to right: Edward Jones (Burne-Jones's father), Margaret Burne-Jones, Edward Burne-Jones, Philip Burne-Jones, Georgiana Burne-Jones, May Morris, William Morris, Jane Morris, and Jenny Morris. Platinotype photograph, 14 x 13.1 cm, 1874. Scanned from Linda Parry, William Morris, Abrams 1996

Edward Burne-Jones's garden studio at the Grange, photographed by Frederick Hollyer 1887. Scanned from Wildman, Stephen: Edward Burne-Jones: Victorian Artist-Dreamer, Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1998
Edward Burne-Jones's garden studio at the Grange, photographed by Frederick Hollyer 1887. Scanned from Wildman, Stephen: Edward Burne-Jones: Victorian Artist-Dreamer, Metropolitan Museum of Art, 1998




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