Bertram Walter Priestman RA ROI NEAC IS 1868 – 1951

Bertram Walter Priestman   RA  ROI  NEAC  IS 1868 – 1951
Offered by: Strachan Fine Art Ltd.
Dealer reference: S00240


Suffolk estuary
Oil on canvas. Unsigned. Probably painted circa 1910

Bertram Priestman was born in Bradford in 1868. He came to London in 1888 and studied under Edwin Moore, Arnesby Brown and at the Slade School. He exhibited at the Royal Academy from 1889 and was elected to membership of the NEAC in 1897, IS in 1900, ARA in 1916 and RA in 1923. He received an Honourable Mention in Paris in 1900, a Gold Medal at Munich International in 1901, a Bronze Medal in Barcelona in 1911 and an Honourable Mention in Pittsburgh in 1912. He was a studio assistant to Sir William Llewellyn PRA. From 1914 to 1927 he had a studio in Walberswick in Suffolk where he taught. Edward Seago was one of his pupils there. He worked extensively in Holland and France.

The free style of the French plein air painters entered his blood. His landscapes capture the feeling and mood of an instant and their atmosphere now often encapsulates a rural world that has gone forever. In his paintings from the turn of the 20th century the details of landscape are deftly flicked in and perspective created by creating different depths of visual field each painted in a different focus. Although versatile (he was even an accomplished portraitist) it is the melodious greens of his palette which feature in so many of his most striking pictures.

As he established a reputation, contemporary critics frequently commented on his painting of skies. Frank Brangwyn described Priestman as ‘the finest sky painter of our day’. He was compared with Constable who never ceased to be intrigued by the changing patterns of clouds, light and the elements. For Priestman, though, skies do not exist as self-contained studies but as part of an observed landscape. He in fact loved painting the sky twice, once as it was and then again as reflected in the river or sea below with all the variations and distortions of light, wind and water. Skies are dramatic and set the mood of the countryside and play on the emotions of the spectator. The traditional countryman lives in harmony with the land and the weather and understands both. It is this vitality which makes Priestman’s landscapes true works of art.

Messum’s Fine Art “East Coast Influences” 2007

Height: 17.00inch (43.18 cm)
Width: 26.00inch (66.04 cm)


Very good


Circa 1910



Call Dealer Email Dealer
View other items from Strachan Fine Art Ltd.

Select a Location

Select a Specialism