The Art Students, Ballarat GalleryArt School, Herbert H. Smith
  • Artist
    Herbert H. Smith
  • Born
    1875
  • Died
    1957
  • Title
    The Art Students, Ballarat GalleryArt School
  • Date of Production
    c. 1898
  • Medium
    Watercolour
  • Dimensions
    62.5 x 46.0 cm
  • Credit Details
    Purchased with funds from the Gallery Women’s Association, 1997

Herbert H. Smith

The Art Students, Ballarat GalleryArt School

Ballarat born H H Smith enrolled at the Ballarat Gallery Art School, which was originally known as the Ballarat West Technical School, when it opened in November 1891. Here he rose to the position of Assistant Master and in 1898 he left for Sale where he was to spend the next few years as Director of the Sale Technical Art School.  Smith then  went to  England to continue his studies  before returning to Australia where he accepted a position as the Director of the Art Gallery of Ballarat Arts School in 1905.  In 1907, following a merger between the Ballarat East and Ballarat West Technical Art Schools, Smith was appointed  Principal of the Ballarat School of Mines Art School, a position he retained for more than three decades.

Painted in the mid - late 1890s this charming and intimate work is unusual for Smith, a watercolourist who  generally painted landscapes. In this image  two students are depicted, including  the red headed Florence Allender who was to become Smith's wife in 1905.  The women are featured in the school studio with its statuary, still life, relief panels and drapery that were typical of the props used to teach art at that time.