Henry Wilson (1864-1934), a leading figure during the Arts and Crafts Movement, was aptly summed up by his contemporary C.R. Ashbee as the 'arch individualist'. Described in his obituary as the antithesis of the forthright and fiery William Morris, Wilson's calm and intellectual approach enabled him to understand the mood of the Arts and Crafts movement, which aimed to synthesise the disciplines of traditional crafts with modern day methods. Wilson combined a training in architecture, sculpture and painting with a knowledge of metal working in the manner of his mediaeval predecessors. He also lectured and wrote, and his book 'Silverwork and Jewellery, an introduction to students and workers in metal' (1912) is still popular with apprentices in this field. Henry Wilson's originality stemmed from his ability to combine the strictest disciplines of his craft with a multitudinous variety of influences.
Much of Henry Wilson's early work was carried out in London from the office of the architect J.D. Sedding, and from his own studio at 17 Vicarage Gate, Kensington. After his marriage (1901) Wilson moved to Kent and lived in a house owned by Alma Tadema until his own, at nearby St. Mary Platt, was completed.
A silver chafing dish by Wilson, also 1908, from the Collection of the Victoria and Albert museum, was exhibited, and is illustrated on page 18 of the catalogue Treasures of the 20th Century.