John Flower was a prolific artist, but only a tiny fraction of his work has ever been published, with the remainder scattered among various public and private collections, some of which remain uncatalogued. It is therefore difficult to appreciate fully how much he achieved in his lifetime and how important this body of work is, both in terms of its artistic value and as a historical resource. Flower was acutely conscious of the gathering pace of urban change which resulted in the development of Leicester from a compact market town into a sprawling industrial city. He was equally aware of the importance of his own role in documenting for posterity the antiquities of his native town and county before they were lost.
Neil Finn is an archaeologist and historic building surveyor who has worked in Leicester and Leicestershire for over 25 years.
Research into the life and work of John Flower developed out of an interest in the artist’s depictions of Leicester’s early buildings and street scenes, which offer an unparalleled insight into the urban landscape at a pivotal point in its history, at the opening of the Victorian age.
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