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Public Statues and Sculpture Association

Harry Dixon (1861–1941)

Painter, illustrator and sculptor, principally of wildlife, an interest nurtured by childhood trips to the London Zoo with his father who had been commissioned to photograph the animals. Dixon began his studies at the Heatherley School of Fine Art, but from 1883 to 1887 was in Paris, studying at the Académie Julian and in the studios of Bouguereau and Lefebvre. He carved four stone Lions for T.E. Collcutt’s Imperial Institute, South Kensington, 1887–93; following the demolition of the greater part of the buildings, 1956–65, two of the Lions were re-erected in front of the only significant survivor of the demolition, the Queen’s Tower, and two were relocated to the Commonwealth Institute (now in the grounds of Clarence House). Dixon exhibited both paintings and sculptures at the Royal Academy from 1885. In 1891, his watercolour, Lions, was purchased by the Chantrey Bequest for the Tate. He was a member of the Art Workers’ Guild from 1891 (resigned 1898) and of the Royal Society of British Sculptors from 1905.

Bibliography: T. Cavanagh, Public Sculpture of Kensington and Chelsea with Westminster South-West, Watford, 2023, pp. 321–22; Mapping SculptureOxford Art Online – Benezit Dictionary of Artists.

Terry Cavanagh November 2022