Henry Scott Tuke (York, 12 June 1858 - Falmouth, 13 March 1929) was a British painter and photographer. His most notable work was in the Impressionist style and he is probably best known for his paintings of young men and boys, which have earned him pioneering status in homosexual culture and queer art.
In 1874 he moved with his family to London, where he enrolled at the Slade School of Art. After graduating he traveled through Italy in 1880, and from 1881 to 1883 he lived in Paris, where he studied with the French painter Jean-Paul Laurens and he meets the American painter John Singer Sargent, also the author of several male figures, although this was little known during his life.
During the 1880s Tuke met the Irish-born playwright and poet Oscar Wilde, and other important authors and writers, such as John Addington Symonds. Most of them are homosexuals, then usually identified as proponents of Uranism.
Today he is remembered mainly for his oil paintings of young people, but he was also successful as a figurative painter; he was an established maritime artist and produced a considerable number of portraits of sailing ships as well as human figures. Tuke was a prolific artist, with over 1,300 listed works and others still waiting to be. Elton John owns a rich collection of his paintings.
Gifted with a strong sense of color, he excelled in the representation of natural light, especially the soft and sweeter one coming from the fragile English summer sun; although he often finished his paintings in the studio, photographic evidence shows that he worked mostly en plein air, thus best representing the freshness of the color and the realistic effects of sunlight reflected on the sea and on the skin of his models.
Tuke is also regarded as an important maritime artist. During his career he painted many images of majestic boats and sailing ships, mainly using the watercolor technique; these remained commonly known at least until the 1930s. He was often fascinated by the beauty of large ships under full sail and since he was a child he seems to have been able to portray them from memory. His decision to move permanently to Falmouth in 1885 was, in part, influenced by the constant presence of ships in the nearby port.
Some of the main examples of his male created by him were almost immediately purchased by important art galleries; he was also well known as a portrait painter and maintained a London studio to be able to work on his commissions. Among his best-known portraits of him is that of the soldier and writer Thomas Edward Lawrence (1888-1935), the future lieutenant colonel of the British army who became famous under the name of Lawrence of Arabia.

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