Artist Bio

Back to Artist Listings

Stubbs, William Pierce

William Peirce Stubbs (1842-1909) was born in Bucksport, Maine to a sea captain and shipmaster; he became the master of his father's ship in 1863, a post he held for ten years. He was self-taught as an artist, painting his first ship portrait in 1871. By 1876 he was listed as a marine painter in the Boston city directory. He shared a studio space with Wesley Webber and had studios variously in Boston, East Boston, and Charlestown, where Samuel Badger was his student. His early paintings were genre scenes of seaside life in Bucksport, but he later became known for his ship paintings in the tradition of popular ship portraitists. His works included paintings of the whaling fleets of New Bedford and Nantucket. After 1887 Stubbs developed "melancholia," showing signs of manic depression following the deaths of his wife and daughter. His work appeared in an exhibition at the International Maritime Exhibition in Boston in 1890. In 1894 he was committed to the Worcester State Hospital, where he died ten years later. His works remain highly regarded today, and are in museum collections throughout the United States. No items found.