John Edmund Halpin, Miniature Painter

(b. 1764, d. ? )

Miniature Painter

From A Dictionary of Irish Artists 1913

Was born in Dublin in 1764, the son of Patrick Halpin and his wife Eleanor. He was a pupil of Francis Robert West and J. J. Barralet in the Dublin Society's Schools, and exhibited copies of their drawings at the Society of Artists in William Street in 1780. He was afterwards sent by his father to study in London, and remained there some time. He had from his youth a great desire to go upon the stage, and Macklin, whom he met in London, urged him to do so. But in deference to his father's strong objection he resisted the temptation and returned to Dublin, where for a time he practised with some success as a miniature painter. His long-cherished wish to become an actor at length induced him to abandon art, and he made his first appearance on the stage at Crow Street Theatre in 1790. Although his debut was fairly successful he failed in attaining any position in his new profession, and eventually he relinquished it and returned to his brush. A miniature by him of "William Macredy" was engraved by W. Ridley for "Parson's Minor Theatre," 1794. He settled in London as a miniature painter, but no further account of his life is forthcoming. His portrait as Pierre in "Venice Preserved," appeared in the "Hibernian Magazine" for March, 1790.

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