James Robert Granville Exley RE (1878-1967)
James Robert Granville Exley RE (1878-1967) is best known for his detailed and characterful etchings of chickens and other fowl. He also produced portraits of the wealthy and landscapes and town scenes, particularly of his native Yorkshire. He developed an extremely fine etching technique, often combined with drypoint, aquatint and tonal printing.
Exley was born at Great Horton, Bradford in West Yorkshire. He studied at Bradford Grammar School, Skipton Art School and then at the Royal College of Art, London under Sir Frank Short. He was elected an associate of the Royal Society of Painter-Etchers and Engravers in 1905, before graduating from the RCA in 1907, and then becoming a fellow of the RE in 1922. He worked for a time in Paris, and went on to become Principal of the Cambridge and County School of Art 1909-12, and then Head of Hull School of Art 1912-19. Exley exhibited widely from 1906, including at the Royal Academy, Redfern Gallery and Connell & Sons in London, and the Glasgow Institute. He was also commissioned to paint miniature paintings for Queen Mary or a royal dolls house.
His work is in numerous public collections including the British Museum, National Trust, Victoria and Albert Museum, and the Fitzwilliam Museum, Cambridge.