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Harry Furniss (1854-1925)


Harry Furniss (1854-1925)

Harry Furniss was a highly inventive and energetic cartoonist and illustrator. Though he worked as Parliamentary cartoonist for Punch for fourteen years, he was of independent spirit, and so happier developing his own projects, be it his parodic ‘Royal Academy’ or the magazine, Lika Joko. His ability to epitomise a person’s character by exaggerating mannerism or appearance made him an ideal illustrator for the work of Charles Dickens.
Harry Furniss was born in Wexford, Ireland on 26 March 1854. He was the son of a Derbyshire Civil Engineer and his second wife, the Scottish miniature painter, Isabella Mackenzie. When the family settled in Dublin, in 1864, Furniss was educated at the city’s Wesleyan College, and then studied at the schools of the Royal Hibernian Academy.
Furniss always maintained that he was essentially self-taught as an artist, and he appears to have gained many of his skills as a draughtsman from Punch and its Irish version, Zozimus (later Zoz, or the Irish Charivari).

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