Frank Brangwyn was a consummate artist, self-taught, world-renowned muralist, oil painter, watercolorist, draftsman, printmaker, illustrator and designer of interiors, jewelry, stained glass, pottery and furniture. He was born in Bruges, Belgium in 1867 and died in Ditchling, England in 1956. At the young age of fifteen Brangwyn apprenticed with William Morris where he received rudimentary training and prepared designs for various applications in the master’s workshop. At the age of seventeen his painting was accepted by the Royal Academy. He later designed for Siegfried Bing and Louis Comfort Tiffany and his interest in Post-Impressionism came through his friendship with Maurice Denis. At the age of thirty he was a founding member of the Vienna Secession. In his day, through his international exhibitions and mural commissions he became recognized as the foremost British artist in the world. Brangwyn rates amongst the finest printmakers of the early 20th century, producing over 500 prints.
Like his contemporaries, Maxfield Parrish, Jose Maria Sert, Alphonse Mucha, Edgar Degas and Franz von Stuck, Brangwyn used photography as a primary aid in the execution of his elaborate allegorical murals. Little was known of Brangwyn’s use of photography until the discovery of this photographic archive in the 1990s.