John King, the premier sporting artist whose work was published frequently in H&H for many years, died on Monday of last week (Sept 8) aged 85.
A keen and bold horseman across country, John rode after hounds in the many hunting countries he illustrated brilliantly in oils, water colour and pencil sketches. He was also an accomplished sculptor.
John King sometimes accompanied former H&H Editor Michael Clayton in the hunting field to produce illustrations for Michael’s weekly hunting column “Foxford’s Hunting Diary”. They produced a book illustrating hunting throughout the UK, “The Golden Thread”, published in 1984.
Born in West Tytherley, Hampshire, in the house he occupied most of his life – and in which he died – John King switched from an intended career in farming to become a sporting artist. He hunted with the Hursley, and rode in point-to-points, and was much influenced by the sporting artist Lionel Edwards who lived nearby and was a family friend.
Prolific and highly talented, John King held one-man exhibitions in London of his work which included military ceremonial occasions, and superb portraits of horses and hounds. He became a major illustrator of hunting throughout the British Isles from the 1950s, and he achieved commissions to paint hunting, racing, polo and family portraits in the United States, South Africa, Belgium, Holland, Germany and France.
John King is survived by his wife, Maryrose, his son David and daughter Fiona, and three grandchildren. A funeral is taking place at St Peter’s Church, West Tytherley on Saturday (September 20th) at 2.30 pm.
This news story was first published in H&H magazine on 18 September 2014