The majority of Towne’s exhibited work has been lost, especially from the pre-Italian period. Exhibits are listed in date order and comprise Towne’s work shown at the Society of Arts in 1759 (FT001); the Free Society of Artists in 1763–6 (FT005, FT006, FT007); the Society of Artists of Great Britain between 1762 and 1773 (FT002FT003FT004FT008FT009FT010, FT011FT012, FT013, FT014, FT015, FT016, FT017, FT018, FT020); the Royal Academy between 1775 and 1810 (FT048, FT145, FT148, FT557, FT557a, FT574, FT575, FT576, FT598, FT627a, FT645, FT645a, FT648, FT649); at Towne’s own exhibition of 1805 (FT063a, FT068, FT168, FT169, FT243, FT299, FT302, FT305, FT307, FT308, FT322, FT323, FT324, FT345, FT348, FT360, FT381, FT547a); and at the British Institution (FT652, FT653). 

One Society of Artists exhibit, of 1773, certainly survives (FT019) and other exhibits are suggested among other surviving works, with varying degrees of confidence (FT023, FT047, FT154, FT156, FT157, FT159, FT450, FT646, FT562, FT601, FT618, FT644, FT651). A lost painting of North Wales (FT148), which may have been exhibited in 1779, is listed among the ‘Sold’ lost works.

About the author

  • Richard Stephens is an independent art historian. He was awarded a PhD at Birkbeck College, London, for his thesis, A Catalogue Raisonné of The Works of Francis Towne, on which his Catalogue Raisonné of Francis Towne (1739–1816) is based. In 2016 he curated the exhibition Light, Time, Legacy: Francis Towne's watercolours of Rome at the British Museum, London. He edits The art world in Britain 1660 to 1735, published by the University of York.


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Richard Stephens
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Richard Stephens, "Exhibited", A Catalogue Raisonné of Francis Towne (1739-1816), (London: Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art, 2016),

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