Painter and printmaker, born in Birkenhead, the son of an architect. He trained with Julius Olsson in St. Ives during the 1890’s and also spent time at Liverpool School of Art. In 1912, he came into contact with the Camden Town Group and his work began to show the influence of Spencer Gore. His close friends included Augustus John, Herbert MacNair and the poet Gordon Bottomley.
For many years he lived and worked in Liverpool, he was a member of the Liver Sketching Club and the Sandon Studios Society and exhibited with and was a member of the LG until his death. A consummate master of composition and perspective, Hay had a passion for Japanese colour prints and this influence is reflected in the decorative nature of many of his works. Aside from three experimental etched plates made between 1898 and 1900, James Hamilton Hay did not make any original prints until 1913. Inspired by the example of Francis Dodd (to whom he sat for a drypoint portrait in 1912), he took up drypoint engraving. James Hamilton Hay’s style was much influenced by his friend and house-mate, Henry Rushbury, as well as by Francis Dodd. Sadly, his delicate constitution gave way to serious illness and he died after a series of operations in 1916.
With thanks to artbiogs.co.uk