E W Christmas

E W Christmas
Christmas: E W
Best: Rosemary
Oil on canvas
305 x 250 mm
Gifted from the artist

Ernest William Christmas (1863–1918)

The Australian-born landscape painter E W Christmas travelled some 322,000 kilometers, often to places where no white person had preceded him, searching out particularly the mountain and lakeside streams he would become adept at depicting. He first visited New Zealand in 1895; the resulting paintings were exhibited widely and were considered to have ‘caught successfully the peculiar freshness of the New Zealand landscape and the atmospheric effects characteristic of our scenery’. Between 1905 and 1908 and under Tourist Department auspices, he was again in New Zealand painting beauty spots as well as areas that showed how the country’s resources were being developed. Based first in Wellington, then Auckland, he exhibited widely, including at the New Zealand Academy of Fine Arts in 1906, where he won a prize for a Wellington subject. His work is today held in a number of New Zealand galleries.