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Evening, Merri Creek



Julian Ashton

England, Australia

27 Jan 1851 – 27 Apr 1942

  • Details

    Other Title
    Winter's Evening
    Place where the work was made
    Victoria Australia
    Media category
    Materials used
    oil on canvas
    91.5 x 122.0 cm; 112.0 x 133.5 cm frame
    Signature & date

    Signed and dated l.l., "J.R. ASHTON/ OCT 1882".

    Gift of Howard Ashton 1942
    Not on display
    Accession number

    Reproduction requests

    Artist information
    Julian Ashton

    Works in the collection


  • About

    Julian Ashton's 'Evening, Merri Creek' 1882, was claimed by the artist as the first true 'plein air' oil painting in Australia, and therefore a key example for his encouragement of young artists to work directly in the open.

    When Ashton first exhibited his painting of the tranquil waterway near Melbourne, a reviewer commented:
    "Mr Ashton has also on view a large landscape in oils, called 'Winter's Evening', a view on the Merri Creek. It is the time when the light is low, just before the sun sinks to its rest. The whole landscape is suffused with a glow from the setting luminary striking athwart the valley, lighting up the middle distance, which is very well rendered, and shimmering over the surface of the shallow water, above which some swallows are winging their arrowy flight. Gum trees line the sloping sides of the stream, the foreground being broken up with large boulders and reeds, the near foreground falling into shadow, which, like the crest of the ploughed field in the distance, is growing grey as sober evening with dewy fingers draws 'The gradual dusky veil'. The tone and colour of the landscape is very agreeable, the water admirable, and the whole work is in good keeping".
    'The Australasian sketcher with pen and pencil', Melbourne, 11 November 1882

    The Merri Creek runs for approximately 70 kms, beginning near Wallan, a town on Melbourne's northern outskirts, and joining the Yarra River at Dight's fall, Collingwood.

    © Australian Art Department, Art Gallery of New South Wales, 2006

  • Places

    Where the work was made


  • Exhibition history

    Shown in 6 exhibitions

  • Bibliography

    Referenced in 15 publications

Other works by Julian Ashton

See all 30 works