HENRY SCOTT TUKE, English painter, born (d; 1929); Although a great deal of attention has been paid to the paintings and photographs of naked girl children that were innocently, yet disturbingly, common in the Victorian era (Lewis Carroll’s photographs, for example), almost no attention has been paid to the even more prevalent representations in art of prepubescent boys during the same repressive period. In the America of Horatio Alger, the parlors of the fashionable were decorated with the salon paintings of J.D. Brown, whose sentimental studies of newsboys, grocer boys and street urchins not only prefigure wide-eyed Keanes and the teary-eyed horrors of Woolworth’s, but rather perversely transfer the physical horseplay of robust teenagers to the bodies of eight and nine year olds.
The result was hundreds of male Lolitas in the middle-class parlors of America. In England, the grand master of romantic boy painting was Henry Scott Tuke, whom we know to have been Gay. Tuke was an athlete who took great pride in his splendid body. He was obsessed with painting nude boys and experimented, and succeeded, in developing a special technique for capturing on canvas the effect of sunlight on naked skin. Interestingly, his name is not mentioned in several multi-volume sets of reference books calling themselves “encyclopedias of art,” despite the fact that Tuke was enormously popular in his time.
For lovely Tuke images: http://www.topofart.com/artists/Henry_Scott_Tuke