JOHNSON, William

1759 - 1797

William Johnson

William Johnson was baptised at Pettistree, Suffolk on 20 January 1759, youngest son of John Johnson (1722-1780), a surveyor, and his wife Mary Nichols (1716-1800), daughter of Samuel and Mary Nichols of Sutton, and a brother to both Isaac and John Johnson and was trained by his father at Alderton, Suffolk. At one time a professional artist and drawing master, he lived for a time at Eye, Suffolk and painted a series of portraits for the Leeke family at Yaxley Hall but from about 1788 was settled in Chelmsford, Essex where he lectured on art and perspective. William was unmarried and was buried at Chelmsford on 2 October 1797. The 'Essex Chronicle' of 29 September reported: - ‘On Wednesday last died, much lamented, Mr. Wm. Johnson, artist of Chelmsford. The neighbourhood has, by his death sustained an almost irreparable loss. His qualifications as a drawing master were unequalled…He had a genius calculated for a more eminent sphere, and whilst labouring under bodily infirmities clearly evinced with his pencil the greatest strength of genius. His superior abilities were known to but few, and by these few were justly esteemed.’ Two of his etchings 'Yaxley Hall' and 'Dickelburgh Rectory' were exhibited at the Athenaeum, Bury St Edmund's 27-30 October 1908.

Works by This Artist