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Harold Hope Read was the youngest of three sons born to Samuel Sabine and Emma Margaret Read, (formerly Woolfe), His mother died when he was 2 years old and he was raised by a Governess and subsequent step-mother, Emily.
Little is known of his early life although it must be assumed he had a fairly strict and religious based upbringing as the family were Quakers and his father was an Independent Minister.
It is known that by 1901 the family were living at Loampit Hill, Lewisham in London and that Harold was an art student; by 1907 he was living at Bolton Studios, Bolton Gardens, South Kensington and by 1910 he was living at 38, College place, Kemp Town, Brighton
Interestingly at that time this was also the location of the studio used by William Orpen, the society painter and contemporary of Read. Coinci- dentally, Orpen was married to Grace Knewstub, sister-in-law of his friend and fellow artist, Sir William Rothenstein who was the brother of Charles Lambert Rothenstein, Harold’s friend and patron. It is perhaps Harold’s involvement with these celebrated artists and their wealthy and famous clientele that influenced and inspired the series of paintings and drawings he titled ‘High Life’.
|Height||72.00 cm||(28.35 inches)|
|Width||68.00 cm||(26.77 inches)|
|External Height||38.00 cm||(14.96 inches)|
|External Width||33.00 cm||(12.99 inches)|