Edward Brian Seago, RWS, RBA
(1910 - 1974)
A Norfolk Landscape
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The Ritz Carlton, Naples Beach Resort, USA
Marlborough Gallery, London, Edward Seago (1910-1974): Paintings and watercolours, 11 April – 6 May 1978, cat. no.5
Edward Brian Seago was born in Norwich, 31st March 1910, the son of a local coal merchant. A sickly boy Seago spent much of his childhood painting, and later studied at the Royal Drawing Society. Aged 18, Seago joined a travelling circus and spent a number of years touring Britain, Ireland and the Continent. Drawings from this period were included in Seago’s first one-man show at the Sporting Gallery in 1933, a successful show and the precursor to many more. Although largely a self-taught painter in oil and watercolour, Seago studied with Bertram Priestman, RA (1868-1951), a landscape painter and fellow East Anglian artist by adoption. Seago was to become known as the painter of East Anglia, its landscape, coastline and overpowering skies. But, living in Brooke, Norfolk his earliest success was as an illustrator and portrait painter, exhibiting a number of important commissions at the Royal Academy in the 1930’s. The Second World War saw Seago serving with the Royal Engineers 1939-1944 and continuing to paint, the result being an exhibition of his war paintings in 1946 shown in Norwich and Bristol. In this same year, Seago was elected to the Royal Society of British Artists. He exhibited widely, at the Royal Academy, Royal Hibernian Academy, Royal Society of Portrait Painters, The Royal Society of Painters in Watercolour, to which he was elected a member in 1959, the Paris Salon and in many other institutions. Seago travelled widely, painting in Morocco, Greece, Italy, Spain and in France to which he sailed, venturing up the Seine to Paris in his yacht. Seago was equally at home painting the Norfolk landscape as the cities of Hong Kong, London and Paris. In 1957 an exhibition of his paintings of the Duke of Edinburgh’s world tour was shown at St James’s Palace. Seago also painted Queen Elizabeth II, the Queen Mother and Princess Margaret, and was as at home with royalty and his aristocratic patrons as he was with fellow members of the Ipswich Art Club and Norwich Art Circle. His one-man shows in the 1960’s drew huge audiences, such that buyers were rationed to only one work per exhibition. He died in London, 19th January 1974. His works can be found in museums in: London, HM The Queen and National Portrait Gallery; Norwich; Southend and New Brunswick.