William Nicholson (1978-1949)

Probably best known through his graphic works, as a book designer and illustrator, Nicholson was greatly encouraged in his landscapes by Whistler from about 1900. In 1902-03 he produced a series of watercolour, chalk and pen drawings of Oxford which were published in 1905 by the Stafford Gallery as two portfolios of lithographs, with descriptions by Arthur Waugh – father of Evelyn Waugh. With Stafford Gallery blindstamps and Nicholson’s signature, these dramatic works of Oxford show Nicholson’s interest in the effects of light and shade on the city’s architecture.