William Frith
The railway station  1866

Artist/creator William Frith
Title The railway station
Date 1866
Medium engraving

Born in North Yorkshire in 1819, it was Frith’s father who encouraged him to pursue a career in art.


He studied at Sass’s Academy, London in 1835 and then at the Royal Academy schools. Frith was a traditionalist who did not embrace modern art developments. He started his career as a portrait painter, first exhibiting at the British Institution in 1838. William Frith enjoyed painting scenes involving many characters representing the full spectrum of the Victorian class system as they met and interacted in public places. In this way, his paintings were genre studies, and the narratives were influenced by novelists such as Charles Dickens and the artist Sir David Wilke.


Later in his career, Frith’s paintings illustrated social and moral stories, a popular trend in Victorian times. He retired from the Royal Academy in 1890 but continued to exhibit there until 1902.


Frith died in 1909, St Johns Wood, UK