FRY, Douglas

1872 - 1911

Robert Douglas Fry was born at 153 Norwich Road, Ipswich in September 1872, son of Edward Fry (25 January 1834-7 February 1892), a corn & seed merchant, and his wife Annette née Ransome (c1841-8 June 1911), who was born in Jersey, C.I., and married at Friends' Meeting House, Ipswich on 12 September 1861, Robert was a brother to Edward Ransome Fry and his sister, Constance Emily Fry married John Barlow Wood. Robert was educated at Ipswich School and articled to an Ipswich architect and afterwards studied art in London and at the Académie Julian in Paris. As Douglas Fry, a sporting equestrian and animal painter in oils and became an illustrator for ‘The Sporting and Dramatic News’. His watercolours of the foxhounds ‘Chisel’, ‘Helpmate’, ‘Smoker’ and ‘Mischief’ with the hunter ‘Litchfield’, painted in 1894, were auctioned at Sotheby’s in 1985. He exhibited two works at Royal Institute of Painters in Water Colours from 53 Butter Market, Ipswich 1897-1898. Listed as a member of the Ipswich Art Club 1891-1901 but he emigrated to Australia in 1899 and lived in Melbourne for a time where he completed some equestrian paintings before moving to Sydney where he became a member of the Society of Artists and did illustrative work for the 'Lone Hand'. In 1908, his 'Mountain King' was purchased for the national gallery of New South Wales. Regarded as a quiet man, Fry was interested in the differing characteristics of horses and made many studies of them before finishing each work and was an excellent draughtsman and, as a painter, endeavoured to paint exactly as he saw it, with a high degree of finish and before his early death his reputation was steadily growing. Robert Douglas Fry died from pneumonia on 9 July 1911 at the age of 39 and buried at Gore Hill Cemetery, St Leonards, Sydney, NSW. His work is represented in the Sydney Art Gallery.

Works by This Artist