Yorke, William Gay (1817-1893) CA->UK-USA (7)

Catégorie : PEINTRES

YorkeWGV William Gay Yorke's paintings of ships evolved naturally enough from a combination of artistic talent and an early life spent around sailing vessels as a shipwright, painting in his spare time. In his early thirties, he was successful enough as a painter of ships to give up his trade and paint full-time.

Yorke was born in Canada in 1817 in St. John's, New Brunswick. In 1848, he had a son, William Howard York, whom he taught to paint and with whom he collaborated on ship paintings until 1870 when their relationship soured for unknown reasons. Speculation was that the twenty-two year old artist wanted to go out on his own, rather than work with his father.

An oddity in the spelling of Yorke's name developed between 1861 and 1870; he left off the "e". It seems unlikely that this was in any way related to his separation from his son in that latter year. But, in artistic style, the two were very similar, it being difficult to tell one's work from the other. YorkeWG1Perhaps it was an attempt by one of the artists, most likely the elder Yorke (the younger was only thirteen years old in 1861) to differentiate himself from the other.

By 1850, Yorke and son had moved to Liverpool, England. When they separated, the elder Yorke set sail for America, where he lived impoverished and frequently on boats including a canal boat in Brooklyn harbor. He painted until his death.

There are certain shadowy aspects with regard to details of William Gay Yorke's life, in addition to the change in spelling of his name. It is not known where and when he died, or whether he ever returned to England. His last known address in Brooklyn was in the year 1882. His last known painting, the Statue of Liberty, was executed around 1888. With the exception of his paintings, William Gay Yorke then sliped into the mysteries of eternity.

He was a painter of ships, from sailing vessels to steam ships, yachts to tugboats. William Gay Yorke's paintings may be seen in the Mystic Seaport Museum, Connecticut.


William G. Yorke - 7 TABLEAUX
William G. Yorke
Dauntless Leading Cambria
William G. Yorke
N.Y.Y.C. Yacht Columbia Passing Governor's Island
William G. Yorke
American Schooner COLUMBIA Before Block Island
William G. Yorke
Dauntless and Mohawk Racing, October 1875
William G. Yorke
The Puritan vs the Geneste
William G. Yorke
America’s Cup 1887 - VOLUNTEER and THISTLE
William G. Yorke
1887 America’s Cup Race between Volunteer and Thistle