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The National Portrait Gallery acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of Country throughout Australia and recognises the continuing connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and to Elders both past and present.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander viewers are warned that this website contains images of deceased persons.

The Gallery’s Acknowledgement of Country, and information on culturally sensitive and restricted content and the use of historic language in the collection can be found here.

Julian Ashton Life Class

1920
Harold Cazneaux

gelatin silver photograph on paper (image/sheet: 29.5 cm x 24.0 cm)

Julian Rossi Ashton CBE (1851-1942), art teacher, artist and critic, trained in art in London and at the Académie Julian in Paris before coming to Australia to work on the Illustrated Australian News in 1878. After some years in Melbourne, in 1883 he moved to Sydney to work on the Picturesque Atlas of Australasia, which involved him in a good deal of travel. Having begun giving private art classes in 1886, in the early 1890s he taught for the Art Society of New South Wales, but in 1895 he established his own school in King Street. There, his students included George Lambert, Thea Proctor, Elioth Gruner and Sydney Long. In 1906 he opened the Sydney Art School in the Queen Victoria Markets; from 1935, relocated to George Street, it became the Julian Ashton School, students of which included William Dobell, Jean Bellette and Douglas Dundas. Through the 1990s Ashton was a Trustee of the Art Gallery of New South Wales, in which capacity he encouraged the purchase of works by Australian artists. In 1898 he organised the show of Australian art at the Grafton Gallery in London. At that time, he was president of the Society of Artists, which evolved through amalgamation into the Royal Art Society of New South Wales. In 1907 he moved to re-establish the Society of Artists, of which he was president until 1921 and vice-president until 1940. After that, he returned to the RAS. In this way, through a series of strategic moves, Ashton dominated art in Sydney for more than fifty years. His son, also named Julian, was also prominent on the Sydney art scene, serving for a time as president of the Royal Art Society.

Purchased 2015

The National Portrait Gallery respects the artistic and intellectual property rights of others. Works of art from the collection are reproduced as per the Australian Copyright Act 1968 (Cth). The use of images of works from the collection may be restricted under the Act. Requests for a reproduction of a work of art can be made through a Reproduction request. For further information please contact NPG Copyright.

Artist and subject

Harold Cazneaux (age 42 in 1920)

Julian Ashton (age 69 in 1920)

Subject professions

Visual arts and crafts

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The National Portrait Gallery acknowledges the Traditional Custodians of Country throughout Australia and recognises the continuing connection to lands, waters and communities. We pay our respect to Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander cultures and to Elders past and present. We respectfully advise that this site includes works by, images of, names of, voices of and references to deceased people.

This website comprises and contains copyrighted materials and works. Copyright in all materials and/or works comprising or contained within this website remains with the National Portrait Gallery and other copyright owners as specified.

The National Portrait Gallery respects the artistic and intellectual property rights of others. The use of images of works of art reproduced on this website and all other content may be restricted under the Australian Copyright Act 1968 (Cth). Requests for a reproduction of a work of art or other content can be made through a Reproduction request. For further information please contact NPG Copyright.

The National Portrait Gallery is an Australian Government Agency