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HomeContents > People > Photographers > John Dixon Piper

Other: J. Dixon Piper 
Other: J.D. Piper 
Dates:  1818, 8 February - 1900, 30 October
Born:  England, Ipswich
Died:  England, Ipswich
Active:  UK
John Dixon Piper was born at Ipswich on 8 February 1818, fourth of the thirteen children of [[Stephen Piper,3386]], printer, and his wife Mary nee Muddiman (1791–January 1884), youngest daughter of Joseph Muddiman of Long Buckby, Northamptonshire. Apprenticed to his printer father and opened a printing & bookselling shop in Hadleigh, Suffolk. He married at Little Wenham, near Ipswich on 4 January 1844, Elizabeth Ansell, daughter of Robert Ansell. He sold his Hadleigh business in 1854 and returned to Ipswich when he then took up the then 'new-fangled' photography, with his studio at 24 Silent Street, Ipswich and in 1856 exhibited at the Norwich Photographic Society and in 1859 at the Photographic Society of Scotland, also showing in London and was highly regarded. In 1869, described as an artist, still living at 24 Silent Street. A great lover of art and a landscape and figure painter, a founder member of Ipswich Fine Art Club 1875-1899 and elected President in 1887. He exhibited from Silent Street, Ipswich in 1882 one painting, 'An Old Mask', in 1885 two works 'Staverton' and 'Old Trees at Barham' in all he exhibited eight works 1880-1886 including 'The Post Office, Wenham'. John Dixon Piper died, without issue, at 24 Silent Street, Ipswich on 30 October 1900, leaving the then substantial sum of £13,000, one of his executor's being [[William Thompson Griffiths,290]]. His house contents and stock-in-trade were auctioned on 28-29 November and his Silent Street premises on 5 December 1900.
Biography courtesy of Preparing biographies

Approved biography for John Dixon Piper
Courtesy of the Metropolitan Museum of Art (New York, USA)

Piper was a printer and stationer in Ipswich when he first came to notice in the 1856 Norwich Photographic Society exhibition. Most of his work in this and subsequent exhibitions was realized in collodion, but in the 1858 Photographic Society exhibition in London, Piper showed one Talbotype architectural view. At the 1859 Photographic Society of Scotland, it was noted that “a new name . . . demands notice — that of Mr. J. Dixon Piper of Ipswich, who contributes some subjects, both architectural and of general na-ture, which are of a very high class . . . on a large scale, and most effective photographs.” Piper disappears from photographic circles after 1865. He remained in Ipswich, in 1881 listing himself in the census as a “retired bookseller and printer,” and was still alive at the time of the 1891 census. 
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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