HOUGHTON georgiana

1814 . las palmas . canary islands . spain

1884 . london . united kingdom

Living in London, Georgiana Houghton, who never married, became interested in spiritualism after 1859 — before then, we only know that she studied classical art until the death of her younger sister in 1851. She thus came into contact with the spirits by means of a ouija board. Following the advice of her spiritual guides, she abandoned drawing and started to paint, engaging in a visionary work combining organic abstract forms meant to represent concrete entities, as testified by the titles she gave them. In 1865, some of her works were selected for the exhibition at the Royal Academy. The disappearance of her parents in the 1860s left her with no financial resources and she spent the rest of her life in a situation of “artistocratic poverty”. In 1871 she exhibited hundred fifty-five watercolors at the New British Gallery. From 1872 she was interested in spiritualist photography alongside a certain Mr Hudson — a photographer of dubious honesty, whose deception was denounced in 1877. She then ceased this activity. She published two books in 1881 and 1882, Evenings at Home in Spiritual Séance and Chronicles of the Photographs of Spiritual Beings and Phenomena Invisible to the Material Eye. Interblended with Personal Narrative in which she recounted her psychic experiences.