|Dates: ||1796 - 1879|
An Edinburgh accountant, Watson had two calotypes accepted for the 1855 Photographic Exchange Club album, both views of St. Andrews, hinting at a likely influence from that cradle of photography in Scotland. In 1856 he became one of the founding members of the Photographic Society of Scotland, accepting the post of honorary treasurer. In their exhibition that year Watson showed mostly collodion copies of his brotherís paintings, along with a portrait of his brother, Sir John Watson Gordon. Gordon (who had assumed the extra surname in 1826) was the president of the Royal Society of Arts and undoubtedly another influence on his brotherís photography. In the 1858 exhibition of the society, Watson returned to calotypy, showing three architectural views. Upon his death in 1879, Watson honored his brother by endowing the chair of Fine Art at Edinburgh University.
Roger Taylor & Larry J. Schaaf Impressed by Light: British Photographs from Paper Negatives, 1840-1860 (Metropolitan Museum of Art, New York, 2007)
This biography is courtesy and copyright of the Metropolitan Museum of Art and is included here with permission.
Date last updated: 4 Nov 2012.
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