Emanuel Phillips Fox c. 1908
- Born Melbourne 1865
- Died Melbourne 1915
- Oil on canvas 37.0 x 44.5 cm
- Private Collection, Victoria
About the painting
It was during a return visit to Melbourne in 1908 with his wife, the accomplished English artist Ethel Carrick, that Emanuel Phillips Fox painted Sandringham either on-site or from sketches.
The scene is dramatically altered today, but it is not hard to imagine the picturesque scrubbiness of the region which captured the artist’s eye.
By comparison to his paintings of crowded French beach resorts, Fox reveals a quiet affection for the Australian landscape in this intimate and reflective view.
About the artist
With letters of introduction from his friend, the artist Tom Roberts, Fox left Melbourne for Europe in 1887.
Participating in many exhibitions there, his successes at the Paris Salon and London’s Royal Academy of Art were a source of great pride and inspiration to Australian artists.
He was significantly influenced by the art of the French Impressionists, assuming their habit of painting en plein-air (out of doors) recording the changing play of light.
He believed that: “In art everything must start from the springboard of nature. One may treat nature realistically, decoratively, or as a basis for the expression of ideas, but nature must be there.”
Fox and his wife came back to Australia in 1908 and 1913, exhibiting and painting in Melbourne, Sydney and Adelaide.
The outbreak of war brought them back to Melbourne and, in 1915, they helped to organise an art union in aid of war funds and the French Red Cross.
On 8 October 1915 Fox died of cancer in hospital at Fitzroy, and was buried in Brighton cemetery.
Page last updated: 15 Dec 2010