John F. Francis

Artist Biography

Born in Philadelphia, John F. Francis played an important role in the mid-nineteenth-century revival of still-life painting. This largely self-taught artist, who began as a portraitist, found himself committed to the genre of still-life for the majority of his career. Considered to be the most painterly of the nineteenth-century still-life artists, Francis did not receive much credit for his work during his lifetime, though he exhibited at the Pennsylvania Academy of Fine Arts and the Philadelphia Art Union. Now acknowledged as the master of luncheon and dessert pictures, Francis’s paintings can be viewed in the permanent collections of the Smithsonian American Art Museum, the Newark Art Museum, and the Shelburne Museum, Vermont.

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