Walter Wallor Caffyn
1845-1898Walter Wallor Caffyn specialised in painting landscapes, harvesting and river scenes. He lived for many years at Dorking where his address was recorded as 1 South Villas, Vincent Road, Dorking, Surrey. The artist painted the local views there and in neighbouring Sussex and he also made intermittent excursions to Yorkshire.
By the end of the 19th century, as a consequence of the Industrial Revolution, a large and prosperous middle class had emerged in England. Many people had moved away from the country into the city to further their business interests, and they wanted paintings which would remind them of their rural past. This created a huge demand for landscape paintings and Caffyn and his contemporaries produced many pictures to satisfy this market.
Caffyn, like so many of his contemporaries, was attracted to the woodland, rolling hills and picturesque cottages of Surrey. He enjoyed painting these scenes in a natural style similar to Henry Parker, although Caffyn uses a more dramatic range of colours, enriching his paintings with touches of warm reds, yellows and browns.
The artist exhibited at the Royal Academy for over twenty years from 1876 until the year before his death in 1897. He also exhibited at the Suffolk Street Galleries, the Royal Society of British Artists, and the Royal Institute of Oil Painters.
Caffyn painted using a fluid brush stroke choosing natural colours with touches of warm reds, yellows and browns. In his work he frequently incorporates an impressive panoramic view over distant landscape in the background whilst creating intimacy in the foreground with quit detailed foliage and flowers. He often painted birds in his work; it is not unusual to find a hidden kingfisher or a moorhen skimming the water.