Frank O'Meara (1853-1888)

Short Biography

Francis Joseph O'Meara, known as Frank O'Meara was born on the 30th March 1853. He was the son of a doctor whose family resided at 37 Dublin Street in the centre of Carlow. He is thought to have been educated at Knockbeg College, a Diocesan College close to Carlow town. He completed his education in Dublin. O'Meara resided at different addresses in the capital, in Harcourt Street and Lower Leeson Street.

Instead of following a career in medicine, Frank O'Meara opted to develop his interest and talent in art. It has not been established whether he studied art in Dublin, perhaps at the Metropolitan School of Art, later known as the College of Art and Design or whether he took private lessons. In the early 1870's O'Meara moved to Paris to study art. He entered the atelier of Carolus Duran. He was one of about twenty-five young students who studied there at that time. Duran did not charge any fees but he fined those students who refused to speak French. One of his fellow students there was John Singer Sargent. O'Meara's student comtemporaries journeyed to Barbizon, a village situated about 50 miles south of Paris.

Frank O'Meara returned to Carlow in the spring of 1888. He was suffering from malaria which he had had for approximately seven years. He died at the family home with his father present. He was only 35 years old. He was buried at the family graveyard in Bennekerry close to Carlow town.

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