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John “Nino” William Waterhouse is an Italian oil painter who specialized in historical, classical and literary paintings. On April 6, 1849, Waterhouse was born in Rome, Italy to a painting family. Shortly after he was born, his family relocated to England where Waterhouse would help in his father’s studio until his enrollment in the Royal Academy School in 1870. Over the next two decades, John Waterhouse traveled multiple times to Italy to paint and travel. His earlier works depicted classical scenes. It wasn’t until the 1890s that Waterhouse would develop a preference for Pre-Raphaelite paintings where the subject was a femme fatale or other tragic woman.
In 1883, John Waterhouse married Esther Kenworthy and moved to Primrose Hill Studios in London. In 1885, he was elected as an associate member for the Royal Academy and became a full member ten years later. He joined the advisory board in 1901 for the St. John’s Wood Arts Club to help other neo Pre-Raphaelite students. He continued to paint until his death from cancer in 1917.
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