Study of Monkeys

WAG 1045


Charles Maurice Detmold and his twin brother, Edward Julius, were both successful book illustrators, specialising in animals and plants. His electrical engineer father was chronically ill, and Detmold and his brother lived with their uncle, Dr Edward Barton Schuldham. Their uncle was a noted collector of porcelain and Japanese woodprints of natural history subjects and encouraged his nephews' interest. Another uncle, the painter Henry E Detmold, also took an interest in their artistic training. In 1898 they compiled a portfolio of colour etchings of animals and flowering plants in the Japanese style, which were very popular and quickly sold out. They soon produced their first book, 'Pictures from Birdland', published in 1899, which was followed by their exhibition at the Fine Art Society in London in 1900. They also produced a set of 16 watercolours for Kipling's 'The Jungle Book', published in 1908. Their successful painting careers seemed assured, but in 1908 Charles took his own life.