Robert Goff (British 1837-1922)
Charles Goff, was a widely respected printmaker and painter specialising in topographical views of England and Europe who was based in Hove for many years.
Goff enjoyed travelling and led a deliberately peripatetic life, finding subjects for his art in Britain, Italy, Egypt, Japan, Holland and Switzerland. His etchings and paintings earned him an international reputation during his lifetime. He had two distinct careers: born to Irish parents in 1837 he became a professional soldier before he was 18. By the early 1870s he had risen to the rank of honorary Colonel. He retired from the army in 1878, married the same year, and settled in London for a while, before spending long periods in Hove, Italy and Switzerland. From around 1892 he lived in 15 Adelaide Crescent, and later took up a studio in Holland Road. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of Painter-Etchers and Engravers in 1887, contributed regularly to their exhibitions.
Goff left Hove in 1903 to live in Florence with his second wife Clarissa, but kept a studio in Holland Road until his death in 1922. This studio was probably purpose-built for Goff in the 1890s. As well as becoming an honorary member of the academies of Milan and Florence, Goff remained involved with the Brighton and Hove art scene by exhibiting his work at the Brighton Arts Club and as an active member of the Brighton Fine Arts Sub-Committee. It seems that Goff got on very well with Henry Roberts, Chief Librarian and Curator of Brighton Museum from 1906.
Robert Goff was one of the first British etchers to be influenced by Whistler’s etched art.
Goff made a personal, vaguely chronological list of etchings (around 260).
At some point in the twentieth century, Brighton Museum acquired the contents of his studio and there was an exhibition in November 2011- April 2012 of his etchings, curated by Alexandra Loske.
Information supplied and written by Alexandra Loske who is compiling a list of his work.