R. Macgregor (Pseudonym of artist Wilfred Knox)

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Wilfred Knox (British, 1884-1966) was a painter primarily known for his watercolor, gouache and oil paintings depicting marine scenes/ships, harbor scenes and landscapes. He was born in Handsworth, Birmingham in 1884. Little is known of his early life, although Wilfred Knox had worked as an engineer and served in the Royal Flying Corps during WWI. He painted under contract for the well-known publishers, Frost & Reed, but much of his work was painted for a local Birmingham art dealer under the pseudonym of A.D. Bell. The subjects were mostly clipper ships, harbor scenes and landscapes with views in the West Country, Scotland, Ireland and Venice. Wilfred Knox also used the pseudonym R. Macgregor and most of these pictures were clipper ships. Some early works of WWI fighter planes are known to exist, but the Venice views in the manner of Frank Wasley, are among his most decorative and collectable work. At least one other artist painted under the pseudonym of A. D. Bell, painter, Horace Murray Hammond (British, c1879-1966, exh. 1902-1939, fl. 1920’s-30’s), but these pictures were mostly in the style of Birket Foster and quite easily distinguished from Knox’s works. Wilfred Knox died on 30th October 1966 at the age of 82. The use of multiple names was adopted by many artists as a means of circumventing contracts with dealers and to sometimes separate their commercial art from their fine art. An exhibition featuring over fifty of his works was held at Harper Fine Paintings, Poynton, Cheshire, in November 1987.

(Sources: antiques-atlas, “Wilfred Knox 1884-1966 Watercolour Venetian Scene”; Book, Hidden Talents: A Dictionary of Neglected Artists Working 1880-1950, by Jeremy Wood, Billingshurst, West Sussex, Jeremy Wood Fine Arts, 1994; eBay listing, Scottish eBay seller, kcrseeker; antiquesarchaeology blogspot, “Paintings Wilfred Knox 1884-1966 Watercolour Clipper Ship”, written by bintang, July 19, 2014.)