- Also known as
Sir Charles Holmes
primary name: Holmes, Charles John
- individual; painter/draughtsman; printmaker; academic/intellectual; journalist/critic; British; Male
- Life dates
- 16 Chepstow Mansions, W2
- Landscape painter and etcher; art critic and historian, museum director.
Born 1868 in Preston, Lancashire; educated at Eton and Oxford; began in publishing, working with Ricketts & Shannon at the Vale Press as a publisher's assistant 1898-1903 while taking private drawing lessons from Charles S Ricketts and studying etching under William Strang. Then editor of Burlington Magazine 1903-09; Slade Professor of Fine Art, Oxford University 1904 -10. Exhibited at the Carfax Gallery, Piccadilly, London 1909, 1911, and 1919.
Appointed third Director of the National Portrait Gallery 1909-16; Director of the National Gallery 1916-28. Lived in London and died in Kensington in 1936.
He was the author of several publications including an autobiography 'Self and Partners (mostly self)', 1936; 'Notes on the Science of Picture Making', 1909; 'Notes on the Art of Rembrandt' (Slade Lectures), 1911; 'Notes on the Post Impressionist Painters' (the catalogue to the exhibition organised by Roger Fry), 1910 -11; 'An Introduction to Italian Painting', 1929; 'A Grammar of the Arts', 1931.
Posthumous exhibition: 'Sir Charles Holmes 1868 -1936' held at The British Museum June 1968 (6pp catalogue). 80/90 prints all made 1892-5, but never published. His will specified that only 20 should be kept (these were later purchased by the BM from his widow) and the rest must be destroyed. He bequeathed 75 sketchbooks to the BM.
- A.M.Hind: 'The etchings of CH' in the 'Burlington Magazine' LXXII (1938) pp.176ff.
idem: 'The sketch-books of CH', ibid LXXVII (1940), pp.45-52 (with a list of the 75 sketch-books bequeathed to the BM)
A.M. Hind, 'The Water Colours of Sir Charles Holmes (1868-1936)', pp. 1-15 in 'The Old Watercolour Society’s Club: Twenty-First Annual Volume' (1943)
C.J. Holmes, 'Self & partners (mostly self): being the reminiscences of C.J. Holmes,' London 1936