Sefferin John Alken

(1796 - 1857)

Gone Away (one of 4)

One of a set of 4 with "Setting Off", "Full Cry" and "The Kill"

Oil on canvas
12 x 16 in – 30.5 x 40.6 cm
Frame size
15½ x 19½ in – 39.4 x 49.5 cm


Tel.: +44 (0)20 7839 7693


Private collection, UK;
MacConnal-Mason Gallery, London, 1984;
Private collection, USA



Sefferin Alken was the younger brother of Henry Alken Snr (1785-1851), the most famous of this family of sporting painters. Their grandfather, whose surname was Sefferin, had settled in England in the 1750’s, adopting the name Alken after his native village in Denmark. Their father, Samuel (1756-1815) was an architect and engraver and his four sons, of whom Sefferin was the youngest, were all artists.

During the early years of the 19th century, Henry who was born in 1785 was establishing his name as a sporting painter and his youngest brother undoubtedly came under his influence. The Alken family were the first painters of sporting subjects to introduce humour into their work, which became extremely popular with the sporting fraternity who often identified their own experiences in the narrative of the paintings, which were frequently painted in sets of two, three or four.

Sefferin Alken lived in London throughout his life, working mainly to commission, so his work was seldom exhibited. He married Sarah Ann Cawood and their son, Sefferin Jnr (1821-1873) was also a painter.

Alken Sefferin John