Charles Haigh-Wood was born in 1856 in a home above a workshop in Bury, England where his father Charles Wood, a master craftsman, built picture frames. By the 1870s when Charles Sr.'s business was prospering, he diversified into picture-dealing, and moved into a substantial new home.
While studying at the Schools, Haigh-Wood captured a great deal of attention, and by 21 he was exhibiting at the Academy and was subsequently elected a member. Following his election, he traveled and studied Renaissance masters in Italy, before returning to settle in England.
His talent at painting portraits brought him many commissions, but Haigh-Wood was best known for painting drawing room "conversation pieces," or story-telling scenes of polite society, which made him a popular genre painter in the late 19th century.
His work was incredibly popular during his lifetime. A number of his paintings were purchased by greeting-card manufacturers for reproduction, which insured both his financial security and his reputation.
Manchester City Art Gallery
Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool
Bury Art Museum
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