David Roberts is a Scottish painter with a masterful depiction of architectural monuments. David Roberts’ paintings are striking in photographic accuracy. The author’s work was appreciated by his contemporaries, and is still considered one of the best architectural painters in his homeland.
Biography of David Roberts
David Roberts was born on October 24, 1796 in Stockbridge (a suburb of Edinburgh) in the family of a shoemaker. The boy loved to draw with chalk on the walls. This was the first manifestation of the child’s creativity, and the mother noticed that he was doing pretty well.
David Roberts only graduated from elementary school, as his parents did not have the opportunity to pay for further education. It was decided that the child should focus on creativity. The first lessons were given to him by Gavin Beugo, a decorator for whom the future artist served as an apprentice.
In 1815, David Roberts set out on a free voyage. He painted the walls skillfully imitating natural materials such as marble or wood. But such activities did not inspire him for long. Soon the young man’s attention was attracted by the profession of a set designer. For the first time in this role, he tried himself in a circus. Since 1819, David Roberts worked in various theaters, where his creative potential was appreciated. Inspired by positive reviews, after a while he took up painting in earnest.
After the first exhibition of works, held in 1824, the artist set off on a journey.
He visited several countries in Europe, where he created many drawings. In 1833, David Roberts continued to explore the world: he went to Spain, where he spent almost a year, and also managed to visit Morocco. Subsequently, his works were published in various magazines, and the author gained fame as a talented illustrator. Traveling around Europe was not enough for the master – he wanted new adventures. After selling some of his works, he was able to organize a trip to Egypt and other countries that he had long dreamed of.
In the early fall of 1838, David Roberts hit the road. Upon arrival in Alexandria, he rented a ship with other compatriots. On it the company got to Nubia. Then the artist lived for a long period of time in Cairo, where a pious Christian was allowed to enter the mosque and make sketches.
After a while, David Roberts decided to visit the Holy Land. In the winter of 1839 he went on a journey, and in the spring he returned to Egypt. A painting with a panoramic view of Cairo, almost three hundred drawings, a diary, notebooks with sketches – the author brought all this with him to his homeland, to Scotland. In 1841, a significant event took place: the artist became a member of the Royal Academy. In the 1840s, an album was released with his work, as well as their photographs. Thanks to these publications, David Roberts became the most famous painter of the Victorian era.
The artist subsequently continued to travel, but did not travel outside Europe. David Roberts left this world on November 24, 1864 in Edinburgh.
The most famous paintings by David Roberts
Paintings by David Roberts were popular during the life of the author and are admired by connoisseurs of art to this day. Here are his famous works:
- “Jews leave Egypt” (1829) – an important event in the history of the Jewish people, described in the Bible, is displayed.
- “View in Cairo” (1840) – we see the capital of Egypt in the area of the famous Al-Khalili market.
- “Gateway to the Great Temple at Baalbek” (1841) – captures a temple in an ancient city in Lebanon.
- The Destruction of Jerusalem (1850) – depicts the siege of the city by the Romans during the first Jewish War (66-73 AD)
- “Edinburgh from Calton Hill” (1858) – this is how the author saw his hometown from Calton Hill – one of the most popular local viewing platforms.