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John Wollaston (painter)

John Wollaston was an English painter of portraits, active in the British colonies in North America for much of his career. He was one of a handful of painters to introduce the English Rococo style to the American colonies. Little is known of Wollaston's early life, he is believed to have been the son of a painter, born in London. Some sources give his father's name as John Wollaston. Little is known about his artistic training, it seems evident, from his painting style, that by the time of his American sojourn he had either acquired further training or had developed his personal style a good deal on his own. Stylistically, Wollaston's work bears some similarity to portraits by Thomas Hudson and Allan Ramsey, among others, it has been suggested that his teacher was Joseph van Aken, who completed the drapery in paintings by these and other artists of the period; that Wollaston considered himself English rather than American may be seen by the label on the back of a portrait of William Smith, Jr. painted in 1751.

Wollaston's first securely documented work, executed in 1742, is a portrait of Methodist evangelist George Whitefield. An engraving was produced after it by John Faber Junior. A handful of other paintings dating to before his trip to the colonies exist, including a portrait of an unidentified officer of the British Navy now in the National Gallery of Art. Wollaston crossed the Atlantic in 1749. In 1752 he journeyed south, spending a short time in Philadelphia before arriving in Annapolis by the spring of 1753. During the following year or so he completed some sixty portraits of Marylanders, he next moved to Virginia, producing a comparable amount of portraits of locals between 1755 and 1757. Throughout he continued using the compositions and portrait types he had learned in London. By the fall of 1758 Wollaston was back in Philadelphia, it seems that he visited the West Indies before arriving in Charleston in September 1765. Charleston was his last stop in America. Here he disappears from the historical record.

Wollaston's artistic style changed little in the eighteen years. His portraits feature rich depictions of fabrics and elegant poses, his subjects are smiling and oval-eyed; some of his New York portraits feature a landscape background. His treatment of the subjects' eyes in particular is considered somewhat peculiar, serves to identify his unsigned portraits, his works those painted during his Charleston sojourn, depict figures on a smaller scale than the 50x40 format preferred by his Maryland and Virginia patrons. Wollaston has been described as "competent but not inventive" by some modern critics. Wollaston travelled more in the American colonies than any other painter, served to satisfy a growing demand for formal portraiture for merchants and landowners; that his work was respected in his day can be seen from laudatory poetry published in the Maryland Gazette in 1753 and in a 1758 edition of The American Magazine and Monthly Chronicle for the British Colonies. The former was penned by a "Dr. T. T." and reads in part: BEHOLD the wond’rous Power of Art!

That mocks devouring Can Nature's ev' ry Charm impart. Wollaston's influence on younger artists was felt in Philadelphia, it seems that Jeremiah Theus became acquainted with Wollaston's work during the latter's time in Charleston, adopted some of the older artist's techniques in his own paintings. Today, Wollaston's portraits can be found in many museum collections. 7 paintings by or after John Wollaston at the Art UK site

Vinnie Moore

Vincent "Vinnie" Moore is an American guitarist and a member of the British hard rock band UFO. Moore is one of the most influential and important guitarists to emerge from the virtuoso boom in the mid to late eighties. Moore was born in New Castle, only a couple of miles from fellow musicians George Thorogood, he began his professional career at age 12 after receiving a guitar as a Christmas present. During a 2018 interview, Moore stated, "I got my first guitar for Christmas when I was like 12 just because I saw a picture of a guitar in a catalog, a JCPenney's catalog. I thought,'Hey that looks pretty cool. I want that.' That was my motivation at the time, I got it for Christmas, didn't bother with it a whole lot. I started taking lessons for the next year. I started to get obsessed with it."R. Y. A. N. - Season 2, Episode 5: Vinnie Moore During that same interview, Moore was asked who his earliest teachers were, he stated, "The first teacher was Mary Biddle, I studied for a year with her, just some basic lessons at the local music shop.

After about a year, I had advanced, she referred me to another guy named Nick Bucci, a great player in my local area. He was studying jazz guitar with Pat Martino, was a rock guy, he just taught me a lot of stuff. Y. A. N. - Season 2, Episode 5: Vinnie Moore Moore played clubs and bars until Shrapnel executive Mike Varney discovered him via a demo and bio that Vinnie submitted to the Spotlight column, which Varney headed for Guitar Player Magazine. His connection to Varney led to an opportunity to appear in a Pepsi commercial in 1985. Following this, Moore recorded his first solo album, Mind's Eye, released on Shrapnel Records and featuring Tony MacAlpine on keyboards; the album sold over 100,000 copies. Vinnie Moore played lead guitar with the heavy metal band Vicious Rumors on their debut album, Soldiers of the Night; the album features Moore's solo-song "Invader", in the style of Van Halen's "Eruption". The shred guitar craze of the late eighties led to more releases for Shrapnel. Moore began performing with other hard rock and heavy metal bands.

Moore joined Alice Cooper's band for a tour and appeared on the Hey Stoopid album. Moore released two instructional videos on guitar playing. Moore has been the lead guitarist for UFO since June 2003, releasing his first studio album with them You Are Here the following year in 2004; this has been followed by The Visitor, Seven Deadly and A Conspiracy of Stars. On August 5, 2013, Moore came on stage to perform live with Peter Frampton on Frampton's Guitar Circus concert at Musikfest in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. Moore is playing guitar on Red Zone Rider's debut album Red Zone Rider released September 16, 2014. Moore is endorsed by Dean guitars, with whom he has several signature models. Prior to his endorsement with Dean, he used guitars made by various other brands over the years including Ibanez and Fender, most notably the Talon model, manufactured by Heartfield, one of Fender's sub brands. Moore currently uses ENGL amplifiers and DiMarzio pickups. Vinnie Moore's Official Web Site

William Petre, 13th Baron Petre

William Joseph Petre, 13th Baron Petre was an English nobleman and priest of the Roman Catholic Church. Petre was the eldest son of 12th Baron Petre and Mary Theresa Clifford, his maternal grandparents were Theresa Constable-Maxwell. Theresa was a daughter of Charles Clifford, 6th Baron Clifford of Chudleigh and Eleanor Mary Arundell. Eleanor was a daughter of Henry Arundell, 8th Baron Arundell of Wardour and his wife Mary Christina Conquest. Petre began studying for the priesthood in 1872, was ordained in 1874, taught for several years at Downside Abbey. During his time there, Petre endowed the school with a library a swimming pool. Petre found conventional Catholic education narrow and stultifying and resolved to open his own school. Petre was in Domestic Prelate to the Court of the Holy See, he wrote several polemical pamphlets on the problem of Catholic Liberal Education. From the sale of the family library, in the summer of 1877 he purchased Woburn Park, home of the wealthy Southcote family, 100–120 acres of deer park-style landscape fronting the River Thames, in Addlestone, Surrey and containing a commanding knoll above the end of the combined Bourne, a deep stream and its confluence.

The wide knoll is Woburn Hill where Philip Southcote turned its farmhouse into a mansion in the early 18th century. In Woburn Park, Petre began a Catholic boarding school with a half-dozen boys, it was deliberately unconventional: it had few explicit rules and a Parliament at which the school's administration was debated by the pupils. These debates were recorded in The Amoeba. Pupils dressed for dinner every night and special mention is made of the school's "constant hot water"; the school grew and its ceremonial mace, made in 1881, displayed in the Stone Hall comes from the "parliament". Lord Petre, wearing sumptuous robes, acted as Speaker as the boys, sitting as members for imaginary constituencies such as Chilcompton, Gurney Slade and Radstock, debated "bills" in precise imitation of the House of Commons. In Iain Moncreiffe of that Ilk's "Essex" a passage reads: "A late lord Petre was himself a priest, who took a special interest in education, carried on a lordly school at Woburn Hill, once renowned as a ferme ornée, between Weybridge and Chertsey".

The first incarnation of the school failed financially after a few years in midsummer 1884. The accidental death by drowning of Fotheringham, a senior boy staying at the site in the holidays, dented the confidence of prospective parents. In 1884, Petre sold the premises to the Josephites for their St George's College. From a Catholic publication at the time: The aim was to bring up the youth of the richer classes in the surroundings of comfort and refinement which belong to their station, to carry on the habits of home life, though at school; the school has risen to number some eighty boys, may be said to be at the height of its scholastic and social success, but it is to be closed. This determination has been brought about by several causes, the accumulative strength of, thought to be conclusive, Mgr. Petre’s health has been undermined by the incessant labours and anxieties which he has endured during the last seven or eight years....various urgent family reasons have had their weight in forcing on but one conclusion.

Meanwhile, a Belgian Congregation of Josephite Brothers, who have a school at Croydon, were desiring to improve their position, after visiting Woburn some two or three months ago, were so much pleased with its position and appearance that they made an offer to purchase the whole property. Under all the circumstances it was thought prudent to accept this offer,'after the most careful and anxious consideration, under the best advice' to quote the words of Mgr. Petre’s circular to the parents of his scholars.... It has been a touching and a noble sight to see the heir to an old Catholic peerage throw aside all purely worldly and vain attractions and devote the best years of his life to the work of an educational reform and sympathetically building up and courageously striking out on behalf of his ideal.... If Mgr. Petre has done no more than emphasise the necessity of preparing Catholic youth to take part in the public life of the country, he deserves our lasting gratitude.... Those who have grown up within its walls, those who are still within them, bear ample and decided testimony to the punctuality and punctiliousness of its discipline..."

Five weeks on 4 July 1884, William's father died and he succeeded to the title as 13th Baron Petre of Writtle. That same year saw the beginning of Petre's new school at Northwood Park on the Isle of Wight, however Northwood closed about a year later. Lord Petre retired to The Hyde in Ingatestone, Essex. Eight years he died at the early age of 46, his health undermined by the strain of attempting to establish a new type of education for Catholic youth, he was all who knew him spoke well of him. He was kind to his tenants, to the poor and to the young, his profile in Peerage.com