John Pedder

Born: UK 1850

Died: UK 1929

John Pedder, who was born in Liverpool in 1850, was a landscape artist who painted chiefly in watercolour.  On his marriage, in 1883, he moved to London and finally settled in Eastfield, Burge Place, Maidenhead.

Pedder was a friend of George Clausen (1852-1944), who influenced his style. (Bennet, 1978)  Clausen started painting
rural naturalist subjects plein-air (outside) from 1880, in imitation of the French painter, Jules Bastien-Lepage (1848-1884). Clausen met Bastien-Lepage and like many others became a devoted follower.  He wrote ‘Jules Bastien-Lepage As Artist’, c1892, which was published in Andre Theuriet’s book ‘Jules Bastien-Lepage and His Art, A Memoir’. Clausen was also a founder member of the ‘New English Art Club’, who painted rustic subjects and, like Pedder, moved strongly into watercolours. (CAI, 2014)

Pedder attended the Liverpool School of Art and was elected as a member of Liverpool Academy in 1874; at that time he offered tuition (AB, 2014) but later resigned. (RBC, 1920)

From 1877 to 1882 he was a member and Honorary Secretary of the Liverpool Society of Painters in Watercolours and in 1898  became a member of the Royal Institute of Painters in Watercolours. (RI)

In 1910 Pedder became a member of the Royal British Colonial Society of Artists (RBC), formed in 1886 for the purpose of holding Exhibitions in the Colonies. Founder members were William Ayerst Ingram (1855-1913) and Thomas Cooper Gotch (1854–1931), painter and book illustrator. (AB, 2014)   Many RBC members were recognised as part of the Newlyn School of painters; Ingram was a founder member and Gotch was a leading figure.  However, Gotch soon abandoned rural realist narrative painting for a more stylised Pre-Raphaelite approach. (Lomax, 2004)

In 1904 the scope of the RBC was enlarged to include all the British Possessions and Dependencies and the present title received Royal sanction (previously Royal Anglo Australian Society of Artists).  As its title suggests, many artists from the then British colonies of South Africa, Canada, India, New Zealand and Australia also exhibited. British Percy Craft (1856-1934), also of the Newlyn School, was particularly active in the organisation of exhibitions for the Royal British Colonial Society of Artists. The last exhibition appears to have been staged in 1937 at the galleries of the Royal Institute then located at 712 Suffolk Street, Piccadilly, London. (AB, 2014)

Pedder was not a member of the Royal Academy but often exhibited there. It is recorded that in 1901 he wrote to the secretary of the Royal Academy, F A Eaton, thanking him for informing him that his picture, The Lame Foot, had been selected for the National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne. (RA, 1901) This painting was still in their collection in 1930. (NVG, 1930)