Roland Wakelin

Roland Shakespeare Wakelin (17 April 1887 – 28 May 1971) was an Australian painter and teacher, born in Greytown, New Zealand, who with Roy de Maistre and Grace Cossington Smith are regarded as founding the modern movement in Sydney.

He studied at Wellington Technical School 1902–03 then while working in the Land and Income Tax Department took night classes in painting under Henri Bastings. In 1908 and 1909 he visited his brother in Sydney then in 1912 joined him, then enrolled in the Royal Art Society School to study drawing and painting under Dattilo Rubbo alongside fellow students Smith, Norah Simpson and de Maistre.

In 1919 he and Roy de Maistre held a two-man exhibition Colour in Art influenced by Cézanne, Gauguin and Van Gogh at Gayfield Shaw's art salon in Sydney.

In 1913 he started work at the New South Wales Land Tax Office. In 1914 he started work as a ticket writer for Mark Foy's and David Jones department stores, then from 1916 worked for the commercial art firm of Smith and Julius. He worked in London as a freelance artist (spending some time in Paris) 1922–24.

On his return to Sydney in 1925 he held an exhibition of his work, largely influenced by Cézanne at John Young's Macquarie Galleries. He was to hold frequent further exhibitions between 1928 and 1970, with a memorial exhibition held in 1972.

From 1924–41 he worked for the commercial art firm of O'Brien Publicity. From 1942–49 he worked in the drawing department of Edward H O'Brien who were joint venturers with Telstra for the end-to-end production of the Yellow Pages a local Australian Business Directory. He was in Melbourne 1950–51 teaching at the National Gallery School then in the University of Sydney from 1952 teaching part-time, mostly to architecture students. From 1956–57 he toured Europe, visiting England, Holland, France and Italy.

Roland was an affable, sociable man of considerable attainments in fields other than painting - he read widely and had a fine basso voice, with a repertoire from popular songs and Gilbert and Sullivan to Mozart and Bach.

Sourc: From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia