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 Isaac Walter Jenner  (1836 - 1902)

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Lived/Active: Australia/United Kingdom      Known for: Marine and landscape painting

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This biography from the Archives of AskART:
Please note: Artists not classified as American in our database may have limited biographical data compared to the extensive information about American artists.

Isaac Walter Jenner (1837-1902)

A self-taught marine and landscape painter, Jenner painted much local scenery in Australia but continued all his life to paint English scenes from memory.  His most popular subjects were the Sussex and Cornish coasts and large historical seascapes.

He  was born on March 18, 1837 at Brighton, Sussex, England, son of Thomas Jenner, blacksmith, and his wife Harriet, née Walter.  Without known formal education, he worked on oyster and crab smacks and signed on for a voyage in Arctic waters.  In March 1855 he joined the Royal Navy, serving during the Crimean War in the Black Sea and in H.M.S. Retribution at the Dardanelles.  In 1864 he was present at the bombardment of Shimonoseki, Japan.  Discharged in 1865, he learned to paint and worked as a landscape and marine painter in 1873-79 at Brighton and at Hove in 1880-83; he exhibited at Brighton, Lewes and once at the Royal Academy.

He emigrated to Australia and landed in Brisbane on September 19, 1883.

He taught at Miss O'Connor's School, Oxley, and at the Brisbane Technical College in 1887-89, otherwise making a living by selling paintings and holding art unions.

Although he traveled in New South Wales and New Zealand in 1889, he exhibited only in Brisbane and at the Centennial International Exhibition of 1888-89 in Melbourne.  He had helped to found the Queensland Art Society in 1887.  He moved his studio in 1890 to Montrose Road, Taringa, where he lived and worked for the rest of his life.

In 1895 he gave one of his large seascapes, 'Cape Chudleigh, Labrador' (1890) to the Queensland National Gallery soon after its opening.

He died at Taringa on 1 March 1902.  He was survived by his wife Mary, née Jenkins, whom he had married on May 23, 1860 at Anthony, Cornwall, and by three sons and three daughters.

Sources include:
Australian Dictionary of Biography, Volume 9, (MUP), 1983
toowong.cemetery.org.au/images/Trails/artists

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