A Piercing Look

John Jukes (1772-1851)


At the turn of the eighteenth century it was fashionable for men’s hair to be rumpled on top and brushed forward over the eyes as sported by this young gentleman. His frilled shirt projecting over his low-cut waistcoat was another fashion imported from France with Beau Brummel leading the way and establishing a reputation for well-cut tailoring and starched neckcloths.

This well-painted portrait is signed and dated on the reverse – ‘Painted by / J. Jukes London / 1801’. It resides in a gilt metal frame that is also glazed on the back to show the signature.

John Jukes entered the Royal Academy Schools when he was nineteen years old. He  later travelled to India where he already had a relative working in the Bombay Medical Services. Bombay must have pleased him as Jukes was to remain there until 1824 during which time he was well patronised. At a farewell dinner held in his honour his work was praised as ‘almost every person belonging to [the Bombay] Presidency had some token of his talents connected with the dearest objects of their affection’.

Item Ref. 6724

Size: framed, 86 x 70mm

Provenance: Christie’s, May 2001

Exhibited: Irish Architectural Archives, 2009