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Dupont, Gainsborough

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Gainsborough Dupont was the nephew of Thomas Gainsborough He was apprenticed to Gainsborough for seven years and also entered the Royal Academy Schools in 1775. He learned to paint from his uncle and was his only assistant. After his uncle’s death, Dupont completed a number of the Gainsborough’s pictures and produced studio replicas. Dupont was also a skilled mezzotint engraver who made a number of prints after his uncle’s work. Joseph Farington (1747-1821), the gossipy member of the Royal Academy, noted in his diary entry for 21 April 1795, ‘Gainsborough, did not leave his nephew Dupont anything which was thought “hard”. Mr. Harris of Covent Garden Theatre considering Dupont as wanting employ commissioned him to paint portraits of the Actors of that Theatre and only to proceed with the commission when he had no others.’ After his uncle’s death, he [Dupont] inherited his studio properties and lived for a time in Mrs Gainsborough’s house, but he was of too timid and retiring a disposition to inherit his practice, though he was patronized by William Pitt and by the royal family.’
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