The Cotman Collection | Cotman, John Sell, British, 1782 - 1842

John Sell Cotman

British, 1782 - 1842

Artist John Sell Cotman was born in Norfolk in 1782. At the age of 16 he left his hometown for London, where he became apprentice to book publisher Rudolf Ackerman, leaving just a year later to work for the patron Dr Thomas Munro.

He published his first series of etchings 'Miscellaneous Etchings and Architectural Antiquities of Yorkshire' in 1811 based on three tours of the county between 1803 and 1805. It was on these tours that he visited wealthy patrons, Mr and Mrs Cholmeley of Brandsby Hall, near York and stayed with the Morritts of Rokeby.

A leading member of the Norwich school of Landscape painting and prominent member of Thomas Girtin's Sketching Club, Cotman was appointed Drawing Master at Kings College London in 1834 holding the position until his death in 1842