Bindon, Francis (c.1690–1765), portraitist and architect, was fourth son among nine children of David Bindon (c.1650–1733) of Clooney, Co. Clare, landowner and MP for Ennis 1715–27, and Dorothy, daughter of Samuel Burton of Buncraggy, Co. Clare. He studied painting and architecture in Europe. In 1733 he received the freedom of the guild of St Luke, the Corporation of Painter-Stayners; Lionel Cranfield Sackville (qv), duke of Dorset, then lord lieutenant, commissioned a portrait from him (1734).
A member of the circle of Jonathan Swift (qv), Bindon is chiefly remembered for his portraits of Swift; he and Charles Jervas (qv) were the only artists to paint Swift from life. The first and most famous of the portraits, the full-length commissioned by Lord Howth (1735; Howth Castle), commemorating the campaign against ‘Wood's halfpence’, depicts Wood writhing in agony at Swift's feet. A later portrait attributed to Bindon (1740; Moore Abbey) depicts an invalid Swift, his formerly habitual periwig replaced by a crimson skull-cap over long white hair. Bindon's work has since been considered undistinguished, but it inspired a celebratory poem (1741) by the Rev. William Dunkin (qv), Swift's protégé; Bindon portraits are reproduced in various editions of Swift. His contemporaries praised him for capturing exact likenesses of his many distinguished subjects, including Richard Baldwin (qv), provost of TCD; Hugh Boulter (qv), archbishop of Armagh (1742); Charles Cobbe (qv), archbishop of Dublin, and Dean Patrick Delany (qv).
Bindon designed several Palladian-style mansions (Woodstock (1740), Bessborough (c.1744), and Castle Morres, all in Co. Kilkenny) and probably collaborated with Richard Castle (qv) on Belan House, Co. Kildare (1743), and Russborough, Co. Wicklow (1742), completing work that Castle's death left unfinished. Many houses have been attributed to Bindon for stylistic reasons, including terraced houses in St John's Sq., Limerick (begun 1751); Castle Park, Co. Limerick; and Newhall (c.1745) and Carnally, both in Co. Clare.
He was one of the few artists to receive a government pension (1750); in 1758 failing sight caused him to give up his art, and when his brother David, writer on commerce and Wood's coinage, died (13 July 1760), Bindon succeeded him in the family property. He was created freeman of Limerick (1762) and was one of the earliest members of the Dublin Society. There is no evidence of marriage. He died 2 June 1765.