Early Career as an Artist: William Stott of Oldham

This week, research volunteer, Alison Jones, uncovers the early career of William Stott of Oldham, as part of a series of blogs about the artist’s life.

William started at Oldham School of Art during the 1870s.  Oldham School of Art was next door to the Lyceum, which was built in 1856. The original Art School, which William attended, opened in a single storey building in 1864 and closed in 1878. He studied under John Houghton Hague and in 1876 William’s earliest known work was drawn on a visit to Haddon Hall whilst ‘still ‘a student at Oldham Art School.

In 1878 William transferred to Manchester School of Art with Wimpenny, and Jackson. Early in 1878, William Stott was in France where he painted a late winter scene: ‘Un Temps Gris’  which with another painting was accepted for the Paris Salon of May that year.  He had a Paris address and was already a student of Gerome.

In Paris and its surrounding areas, William Stott met, worked and socialised with many artists including James Paterson, Hawkins, (he was sketched by Theodore Robinson), Leon Bonnat, Jules Bastien Lepage, Puvis de Chavannes,  John Lavery,  Alexander Roche,  William Kennedy.  Alexander Harrison, Tom Millie Dow, who was to become a close friend, Frank O’Meara, and John Charles Cazin. He also became friends with RAM Stevenson, cousin of RL Stevenson, who became an Art Critic.  His father bought many of his works. In 1880 William spent the summer in Grez – sur – Loing, 70km South of Paris, which was a famous artists colony.

By Alison Jones, research volunteer.

Seascape by William Stott of Oldham