See paintings by Frederick Daniel Hardy (1827-1911)
See paintings by George Hardy (1822-1909)
Frederick Daniel Hardy and his brother George, were the sons of a musician in the private band of The Royal Household at Windsor. George trained as an artist at the Royal Academy Schools and Fred enrolled at the Academy of Music, destined initially for a musical career like his father. They were distantly related to the artist Thomas Webster, through their Mother’s family.
As a young artist George travelled in rural England and France in search of subject matter, which consisted mostly of domestic interiors. He settled in Kent and moved to join his brother in Cranbrook sometime in the 1860s. He married Ellen Hutton in 1862 and they had three children. Fred abandoned his musical career at the age of nineteen in order to concentrate on his painting. He became a prolific artist, exhibiting almost 100 works at the Royal Academy during his lifetime. His early works are cottage interiors, painted with minute attention to detail and absent of figures. Later, with growing confidence, he painted more complex compositions and there are many fine examples of these works included in the exhibition.
Sidney Cartwright was an important patron of FD Hardy’s work and the Wolverhampton Art Gallery collection is particularly rich in examples of his work.
FD Hardy married Rebecca Sophia Dorofield in 1852 and they had six children. His paintings were often inspired by real life incidents that he had witnessed either at home or in the village.Although his work mostly falls into the category of domestic genre, he occasionally touched on social issues of the day.
FD Hardy lived in Cranbrook until his death in 1911 and his daughter Gertrude, also a painter, continued to live and work in her father’s studio. George, who had never had quite the success of his younger brother, died in Eastbourne, where he spent his later years cared for by his daughter and her husband, a local clergyman.