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Henry Rushbury
(1889 — 1968)

Henry Rushbury was a British painter and etcher. Born in 1889 near Birmingham, Rushbury received a scholarship to study at the Birmingham School of Art from 1903, at the age of thirteen, to 1909. After completing his studies, Rushbury worked as an assistant stained-glass artist before moving to London in 1912. During the First World War, Rushbury served as an Official War Artist. After the War, in 1921 the artist studied briefly at the Slade School of Art, where he began to expand his grasp of the art of etching and drypoint. In the years that followed Rushbury came to be considered one of the most sought-after printmakers, his accurate yet lively depictions of townscapes among his most recognisable works. The artist travelled extensively throughout continental Europe, particularly in France and Italy, sourcing inspiration for his distinctive, spirited etchings. Rushbury was elected a member of the New English Art Club in 1917, the Royal Society of Painter-Etchers in 1921 and the Royal Society of Painters in Watercolours in 1922. He exhibited regularly with many societies and institutions, including the Royal Academy, both independently and as part of group shows.


Alongside his extensive town and cityscapes, Rushbury also illustrated a number of books which captured unique viewpoints of cities such as Paris and Rome on the cusp of modernisation. In 1940 Rushbury was again called to serve in the Second World War as an Official War Artist until 1945. After the War, in 1949, the artist was elected Keeper of the Royal Academy and Head of the Royal Academy Schools, a position he held until his retirement in 1964. For his services to art, Rushbury was appointed Knight Commander of the Royal Victorian Order in 1964. The artist died in 1968. His work remains in the collections of the Tate and the Imperial War Museum, London.