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George William Mote (1832–1909) was a British painter. Mote is
described as being to British 19th century landscape painting what ‘Le
Douanier’ Rousseau was to French Impressionism. Like Rousseau,
George Mote was largely self-taught and came from a very different
social class than many of his fellow artist. In Motes’ case he was
working as a gardener/caretaker to Thomas Phillipps of Middle Hill,
near Broadway, Worcestershire when he first began to have his work
exhibited. Mote later moved to Ewhurst where he lived, with the
exception of two years in London, until his death on January 6, 1909.
Over his lifetime, Mote had an impressive 15 paintings exhibited at the
Royal Academy from 1857–1873, 18 works at the Royal Society of
British Artists, as well as exhibitions at the British Institution and the
Royal Hibernian Academy.
Mote’s early pictures consisted primarily of houses and gardens
around Middle Hill. The landscape there, in the heart of the English
countryside, must have inspired him to paint his surroundings. His
natural abilities as an artist allowed him to excel quickly, and he
developed a recognized specialty for landscape and coastal scenes in
Surrey, Sussex, Kent and Wales. Mote painted in a very direct style
that is reminiscent to the work of British artist John William North
(1842–1924). Mote enjoyed painting landscapes through open
windows, a technique which allowed him to accurately capture
snapshots of rural life in England. In “Shepherdess and Flock”, Mote’s
ability as a draughtsman is evident in his portrayal of gnarled tree
branches and use of recessional perspective. Mote’s careful
observation of detail and color gives his compositions a faithfulness to
the beauty of nature in its purest and most true form.
E.Benezit, Dictionnairre des Peintres, Sculpteurs, Dessinateurs
et Graveurs, Volume 9, Page 899
Christopher Wood, Dictionary of British Art – Volume IV,
Victorian Painters, Page 367 (text), Page 331 (illustrations).