Herbert Colborne Oakley   (1869 - 1944)
His Portraits

Tom (1936)


The following is but a small fraction of the work by this gifted artist, coming from a few private collections in the United Kingdom and from the museums and art galleries where his work has been found.  Missing are the many paintings that he completed in England, in the 10 to 15 years from the time he "retired" from teaching at Kidderminster until he settled in St. David's, also those painted while in France and Italy, as well as some notable paintings sold at auction in the last decade.

His work has suffered much neglect over the past half-century, both in the recognition of him as an artist and in the care of his work.  He seldom exhibited his paintings, being independently wealthy, hence it is not surprising that his work received little exposure.  As previously noted, this web site, a work in progress and hopefully one that will benefit from the input of others, is an attempt to provide a source of information on the artist along with a virtual gallery of his work - nothing more.  As to the care of his work, it is reassuring to learn of the steps being undertaken in the professional restoration of some of his paintings.

The highlight of his work, is unquestionably his portraits.  The subjects he painted were those known well by him, primarily in Southampton in England, Equry and Mory-Montcrux in France, Florence and Settignano in Italy and St. David's in rural Wales, where he spent roughly the last twenty years of his life - and where most of the present material on this web site comes from.  A notable commissioned portrait is that of a Southampton mayor, Colonel Bance, (at the Southampton City Art Gallery).

We hope that you enjoy the work displayed - and if you already possess one of his paintings, please enjoy and preserve it.  Any additional information you may have on the artist, and in particular copies of items of his work not contained on this site, would be greatly appreciated.  As noted, this web site exists for the sole purpose of providing a record of this unique artist's work.

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1890 to 1899
George Frideric Handel
Copied, while a student, from the original in the National Portrait Gallery

1900 to 1909
Colonel Edward Bance DL
Mayor of Southampton 1890, 1904 & 1910 *
Southampton City
Art Gallery
Penuel George Corbin
Headmaster of Tauntons School, 1865 to 1892*
Southampton City

Victorian Beauty
Welsh Farmer
Lady in Mourning

Please continue to the next set of portraits.

"The H. C. Oakley Virtual Gallery" Copyright © 2005-2013 Andrew Gray