George Elgar Hicks

Artist Biography

Born in England in 1924, George Elgar Hicks was best known for his genre paintings and society portraits. Hicks was encouraged by his parents to become a doctor but decided to become an artist after three discouraging years in medical school. By 1844, Hicks had enrolled in the Royal Academy Schools, beginning his artistic training substantially later in life than most of his contemporaries. Following his education, Hicks married his wife, Maria, and did not achieve initial success as an artist due to their growing family. In 1859 Hicks painted a large genre scene which he exhibited at the Royal Academy that same year. He continued to paint large modern-life paintings until the popularity of the subject began to decline. By the 1870s, Hicks’s work centered around society portraits, and he soon became a sought-after portraitist. The artist retired in the 1890s and died just before World War I in 1914. His work can be found in the collection of the Tate Britain, Museum of the Home, and Museum of London Docklands.

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