RUSHTON, George Robert

1868 - 1948

George Rushton - self portrait

Born at Hooper Street, Ladywood, Birmingham on 1 January 1868, eldest child of George Rushton, an engineer, and his wife Betsy née Halford. In 1881 the family were living at 24 Henrietta Street, Birmingham, with young George expected to follow his father into an engineering trade, but at the same time he studied art at Birmingham City Art School in his spare time. In 1891 the family were living at 42 Regent Place, Birmingham when young George was an ‘artist in stained relief’, his sister Elizabeth an ‘assistant school-mistress’, brother Albert ‘learning the printing trade’ and the youngest Ada, ‘a scholar’. He married at Gateshead in 1900, Edith Ash and they had two daughters, and the following year an ‘art master in school’ living at Ashfield Terrace, Ryton, Durham with his 29 year old wife Edith. Art master at Armstrong College, Newcastle-upon-Tyne until 1906 when he came to Ipswich as principal of the Ipswich School of Art succeeding William Thompson Griffiths [q.v.]. In 1897 he sent a painting from 10 Neville Street, Newcastle upon Tyne to be exhibited at the Royal Academy entitled ‘The Widow’ and sent other paintings continuously from 1911 until 1942. Elected a member of the Royal Society of British Artists in 1925 and a member of the Royal Institute of Painters in Water Colour in 1929. During holidays Rushton went on sketching tours of Britain and in Europe and continued to work on commissions for large-scale ‘decorative works’. In 1929 he retired to Blewbury, near Didcot, Berkshire from where he produced many fine watercolours of the area. After a short period in Dedham, Essex, Rushton returned to Ipswich in 1936, living at 'Upgrove', Belstead until his death. A member and exhibitor at Ipswich Art Club 1907-1948 and a regular exhibitor including in 1941 'Bredon Hill from the Cotswolds', 'Frost in Dedham Vale' and 'From Mont Boron' which he also exhibited at the Royal Academy. A full member of the Royal Society of British Artists, of the Birmingham Royal Society of Artists and of the Royal Institute of Painters in Water Colour. Amongst his many students were Leonard Squirrell (1893-1979), Reginald Haggar (1905-1988), Arthur Southgate (1905-1982), Albert Ribbans (1903-1966), George Fathers (1898-1968) and Elsie Haward (1882-1956) and others, he exhibited with them at Tibbenham's Gallery, Brook Street, Ipswich in 1943 'Haymaking in the Cotswolds, which he also exhibited at the Royal Academy, 'The Old Charter', 'Old Martlesham', Penmenpool, N. Wales', 'Ipswich Dock', 'Lavenham, Distant View', 'Beccles', 'The Wye Valley at Goodrich', 'Cattle Resting in the Stour', Martlesham Creek (1914)', 'Ipswich (1906)', 'Roses' and 'Farm Buildings, Belstead Hall' and at the Ipswich Art Club in 1923 had four works on display 'At the Edge of the Copse', 'A Winter's Morning', 'On the Deben at Woodbridge' and 'Sketch at Woodbridge'. In 1932 he exhibited at the Ipswich Art Club from Ryton Studio, Blwebury, Berkshire 'Castle Combe, Wilts' which he had exhibited at the Royal Academy the same year, and in 1943 had six works on show 'Ixworth Mill', 'Interior of a Barn, Belstead', 'Farm Buildings, Belstead Hall Farm', 'Glen Falloch, Loch Lomond', 'Mrs James Hendry' and 'Mrs Harris Brand'. Since Rushton’s death at Ipswich in 1948 his work has continued to be displayed in the local area including exhibitions at The New Gallery, East Anglian Art Shop, Ipswich 1968 and The Haste Gallery, Ipswich, 1988 and 1999. Three of his watercolours 'Village in France', 'Dorset Coast' and 'Rochester on the Medway' were exhibited at the centenary of Ipswich Art Club in 1974.

Works by This Artist