Eveline Syme was born at Thames Ditton, England to Australian parents and grew up in Melbourne. She studied Classics at Cambridge University, and education at the University of Melbourne. She studied art in Paris between 1921 and 1924, attended La Grande Chaumière, the Académie Ranson (with Maurice Denis) and with André Lhote. In 1924 she returned to Melbourne, and in 1925 exhibited her first woodcut. By 1927 she was making linocuts, probably taught by Ethel Spowers, a close friend. She exhibited woodcuts, watercolours and a couple of colour linocuts at the Athenaeum, Melbourne in March 1928. In the same year she discovered the work of Claude Flight from his recent publication 'Lino-cuts' and, inspired by the 'modern' quality of the work, returned to London in January 1929 to study with Flight at the Grosvenor School of Modern Art, located in Warwick Square Pimlico. She spent some months travelling in Belgium and Italy, returning to Australia in April 1930. Syme also had a great interest in Japanese prints, reflected in the composition of this work with its high viewpoint.
Hendrik Kolenberg and Anne Ryan, 'Australian prints from the Gallery's collection', AGNSW, 1998
colour linocut printed from three blocks on thin ivory tissue
24.4 x 18.0 cm blockmark; 30.8 x 22.8 cm sheet
Signature & date
Signed l.r., pencil "EW Syme.". Not dated.
Not on display
© Estate of Eveline Syme
Shown in 7 exhibitions
Australian images: Prints, drawings and watercolours from the collection, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 22 Dec 1979–28 Jan 1980
Project 39 - Women's Imprint (1982), Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 01 Oct 1982–31 Oct 1982
Harbour hymns, city songs: visions of Sydney from the collection, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 13 Jan 1990–11 Mar 1990
Australian prints from the Gallery's collection (1998-1999), Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 06 Nov 1998–07 Feb 1999
Shooting through: Sydney by tram, Museum of Sydney, Sydney, 04 Apr 2009–18 Oct 2009
Sydney Moderns, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 06 Jul 2013–07 Oct 2013
Modern impressions; Australian prints from the collection, Art Gallery of New South Wales, Sydney, 02 Sep 2016–Jan 2017
Referenced in 15 publications
Roger Butler., Melbourne woodcuts and linocuts of the 1920's and 1930's, 'Woodcuts and Linocuts of the 1920s and 1930's', Sydney, 1981, (colour illus.), (illus.). Collection of Ballarat Fine Art Gallery; not paginated; no catalogue numbers
Heather Johnson, Aspects of Art Deco in Australia: Sunrise over the Pacific, 'Art Deco art', pg. 96-105, Sydney, 2001, 101.
Denise Mimmocchi, Sydney moderns: art for a new world, 'Making Sydney modern: the artistic shaping of the postwar city', pg. 66-85, Sydney, 2013, 71 (colour illus.), 316.
Susannah Smith, Look, 'Women's work: their diverse and significant contribution to the modernist art scene', pg. 13-15, Sydney, Aug 2013, 13 (colour illus.).
David Thomas, Deutscher and Hackett fine art auction: Melbourne 29 August 2012, 'Works from the Wesfarmers collection of Australian art part 1: lots 1-23’, pg. 122-123, Melbourne, 2012, 122, 123 (colour illus.). Another example of this work offered at the Deutscher and Hackett sale 'Works from the Wesfarmers collection of Australian art’, Melbourne, 29 August 2012, lot no. 73.
Through artists' eyes: Australian suburbs and their cities 1919-1945, 'The city marginalised to the city revealed', pg. 15-34, Melbourne, 2004, xi, 25 (colour illus.), 26. illus.no. 13
Look, 'Members events', pg. 39-41, Sydney, Sep 2012, 39 (colour illus.).
Modern Australian women: paintings & prints 1925-1945, Adelaide, 2000, 81 (colour illus.), 126. Collection of National Gallery of Australia
Australian prints from the Gallery's collection, Sydney, 1998, 69 (illus.). cat.no. 58
Shooting through: Sydney by tram, Sydney, 2009, 78, 79 (colour illus.).
Harbour hymns, city songs: visions of Sydney from the collection, Sydney, 1990. cat.no. 83
Project 39 - Women's Imprint, Sydney, 1982. no catalogue numbers; not paginated
Australian images: Prints, drawings and watercolours from the collection, Sydney, 1979, 10.
Linocuts of the machine age: Claude Flight and the Grosvenor school, 'The Australians: Dorrit Black, Ethel Spowers and Eveline Syme', pg. 65-68, England, 1995, (colour illus.), 184, 185 (illus.). cat.no. ESy 20; plate no. 43
Printed images by Australian artists 1885-1955, 'The Grosvenor School and colour linocuts', pg. 199-205, Canberra, 2007, 200 (colour illus.). Collection of National Gallery of Australia