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Haughton Forrest

1826 - 1925

The artist Captain James Haughton Forrest achieved considerable fame in colonial society when he arrived from London in August 1876, aged 50. He had retired from the Light Infantry, and had experience working as a marine artist. He was awarded a land grant and a post as a police superintendent, yet quickly established a reputation in Hobart as a marine and landscape painter. He exhibited regularly from 1881, and his works were regular prizes in art union lotteries. Forrest established a relationship with photographer John Watt Beattie and used photography to render the detail evident in his works. He copied Beattie's views with lantern slide projection to paint his larger, majestic landscape works to great acclaim in Tasmania.

Born at Boulogne on December 28th, 1825, he was the son of Captain T.A. Forrest of Forrest Lodge, near Windsor, a sometime military equerry to Queen Victoria.The compiler does not know what art training he had but the results show a precocious talent. Most of his early work seems to have been on commission and one of his patrons was the Prince of Wales.
He served in the army for some years, then in the Post Office in London. About 1875 he left the country with the idea of settling in Southern Brazil. This proved unsuccessful and he moved onto Tasmania in 1876, where he settled in Hobart for the rest of his long life and devoted himself to painting. Some of his works were used for Tasmanian stamps in 1899. He died in Hobart.