Caroline Barker (artist)

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Caroline Barker seated holding paintbrushes, circa 1980

Caroline Barker (1894–1988) was an Australian artist. She is best known for her portraits and still life. The Museum of Brisbane (formerly Brisbane's Civic Art Gallery) holds a large collection of her works.[1]

Early life[edit]

Caroline Barker was born on 8 September 1894 in Ascot Vale, Melbourne, Victoria, Australia.[1]

She commenced her art studies at the art school at the Melbourne Art Gallery (now the National Gallery of Victoria) where she studied painting with Bernard Hall and drawing with Frederick McCubbin. There she was awarded second prize for her monochrome painting in 1917, which provided her with a year's free tuition, enabling her to complete her studies in 1919.[1]

Due to her father's ill-health, the family relocated to Brisbane in Queensland in 1920.[1] From 1921 to 1922, Barker became an art teacher at the Ipswich Girls Grammar School, saving her money in order to continue her studies in England.[1][2][3]

She continued her studies at the Royal Academy of Arts in Piccadilly, London under Frederick Cayley Robinson and Charles Sims, where she also studied anatomy and the chemistry of painting, and then at the Byam Shaw School of Art under Vicat Cole.[2] During this period her works were added to the collections of the Royal Academy, the Walker Art Gallery in Liverpool, the Paris Salon and the Byam Shaw.[2]

Artist career[edit]

Portrait of Rhonda Kelly by artist Caroline Barker, 1942

Barker returned to Brisbane in November 1926.[3][4] Initially she worked in the studios of Vida Lahey and Daphne Mayo before establishing her own studio in George Street.[1]

In 1928, Barker painted a portrait of Lord Mayor of Brisbane William Jolly in his mayoral robes and exhibited it at the Royal Queensland Art Society. Charles Herbert Gough was so impressed by the work that he initiated a public subscription to purchase the portrait as a gift for the mayor from the citizens of Brisbane.[5] As Jolly was a popular mayor, the public were generous in their donations and the portrait was presented to the mayor in December 1928.[6]

Two of her works were used by The Queenslander newspaper for their colour covers, one of poinsettias in 1930 and another of gerbras and bougainvillea in 1931.[7]

Barker taught art at a number of schools including Somerville House (1935-1946), Loreto College Coorparoo, Clayfield College, and St Margaret's Anglican Girls' School and at her own home.[1] Her students include many notable artists including:[1]

Later life[edit]

Barker died on 23 July 1988 at South Brisbane.[1]

Awards[edit]

Gallery[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c d e f g h i Cooke, Glenn R. (2007). "Barker, Caroline (1894–1988)". Australian Dictionary of Biography. Archived from the original on 11 March 2018. Retrieved 11 March 2018.
  2. ^ a b c "WOMAN'S REALM". The Queenslander (10). Queensland, Australia. 16 June 1927. p. 45. Retrieved 11 March 2018 – via National Library of Australia.
  3. ^ a b "In the SOCIAL SPHERE". The Brisbane Courier (21, 481). Queensland, Australia. 30 November 1926. p. 18. Retrieved 11 March 2018 – via National Library of Australia.
  4. ^ "ARTIST RETURNING". The Telegraph (16, 841). Queensland, Australia. 23 November 1926. p. 14 (5 O'CLOCK CITY EDITION). Retrieved 11 March 2018 – via National Library of Australia.
  5. ^ "'NERVE-BREAKING'". Daily Standard (5076). Queensland, Australia. 22 December 1928. p. 6. Retrieved 11 March 2018 – via National Library of Australia.
  6. ^ "Testimonial to the Mayor". The Brisbane Courier (22, 120). Queensland, Australia. 18 December 1928. p. 14. Retrieved 11 March 2018 – via National Library of Australia.
  7. ^ ""The Queenslander Annual."". The Brisbane Courier (23, 000). Queensland, Australia. 16 October 1931. p. 12. Retrieved 11 March 2018 – via National Library of Australia.
  8. ^ de Silva, Greg (29 April 2015). "Elizabeth Anne Dewar (Betty) Churcher AO, AM: 1931 – 2015". Art Almanac. Archived from the original on 2018-03-11. Retrieved 11 March 2018.
  9. ^ Cooke, Glenn (13 October 2010). "Mapping the mythic: Hugh Sawrey's 'outback'". Queensland Historical Atlas. University of Queensland. Archived from the original on 2018-02-27. Retrieved 11 March 2018.
  10. ^ "BARKER, Caroline". It's An Honour. Australian Government. Archived from the original on 11 March 2018. Retrieved 11 March 2018.

External links[edit]

Media related to Caroline Barker (artist) at Wikimedia Commons