FRY, (Robert) Douglas

1872 - 1911

As Robert Douglas Fry, he was born at 153 Norwich Road, Ipswich in September 1872, son of Edward Fry, a corn & seed merchant, and his wife Annette née Ransome, who married at Ipswich in 1861, a brother to Edward Ransome Fry [q.v.] and his sister Constance Emily who married John Barlow Wood [q.v.]. Educated at Ipswich Grammar School and articled to an Ipswich architect and afterwards studied art in London and at the Académie Julian in Paris. As Douglas Fry, a sporting equestrian and animal painter in oils and became an illustrator for ‘The Sporting and Dramatic News’. His watercolours of the foxhounds ‘Chisel’, ‘Helpmate’, ‘Smoker’ and ‘Mischief’ with the hunter ‘Litchfield’, painted in 1894 were auctioned at Sotheby’s in 1985. He exhibited at Royal Institute of Painters in Water Colours 1897-1898 from 53 Butter Market, Ipswich. Listed as a member of the Ipswich Art Club 1891-1901 but he emigrated to Australia in 1899 and lived in Melbourne for some time, did some paintings of horses, and then went on to Sydney where he became a member of the Society of Artists. In 1908 his 'Mountain King' was purchased for the national gallery of New South Wales. He did illustrative work for the 'Lone Hand' and was a frequent exhibitor with the Society of Artists. His reputation was steadily growing when he died from pneumonia on 9 July 1911 at the early age of 39 and buried at Gore Hill Cemetery, St Leonards, Sydney, NSW. Regarded as a quiet man, Fry was interested in the differing characteristics of horses and made many studies of them before finishing each work and was an excellent draughtsman and as a painter endeavoured to paint the thing exactly as he saw it, with a high degree of finish. His work is represented in the Sydney Art Gallery.




Works by This Painter