The sitter was a Calvinist Methodist minister and preacher. He was appointed as the first Principal of the University College of Wales, Aberystwyth, a post he held from 1872 to 1891 before becoming Principal at Bala Theological College, a college established by his father, Lewis Edwards, in 1837. He studied at Oxford and was awarded degrees from Edinburgh University and the University of Wales.
This portrait was commissioned from Herkomer at the height of the artist’s career. By 1897 he had settled into his large castle-like house ‘Lululaund’ in the village of Bushey, Hertfordshire, where he also ran his own art school. He had strong Welsh ties as he was three-times married to Welsh women including Lulu Griffith who died in 1885. ‘Lululaund’ was named after her. The artist used this pose for a number of his sitters and the dark background with red and brown tones is a typical feature of his portraits.
Where to see this painting?
Aberystwyth University Art Collection, School of Art
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