Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria
Born in Essex England in 1820; died in Sorell, Tasmania in 1894.
The Tasmanian artist, Eliza Blyth, wavered between illustrating Australian flora in its simplest form and creating detailed tableaux depicting various species grouped together in elegant arrangements.
Born in England in 1820 into a family of farmers and landowners, Blyth was one of nineteen children. Following in the footsteps of a number of her siblings, Blyth emigrated to Tasmania in 1848. She travelled on board the Himalaya under the charge of Bishop Francis Russell Nixon, the first Anglican bishop of Tasmania and a skilled watercolour artist, who gave her some art instruction on the voyage.
Blyth opened a school in Hobart where she offered instruction in drawing and painting and took advantage of opportunities to exhibit her work in Tasmania and on the mainland at such places as the South Australian Society of Arts in 1863, the Intercolonial Exhibition in 1875 and the New South Wales Agricultural Society and Academy of Art in 1876. She joined Louisa Anne Meredith as one of the Tasmanian artists included in the 1866-67 Intercolonial Exhibition in Melbourne for which she entered a folio of original watercolours titled Tasmanian flowers. The works in the folio range from complicated arrangements of flowers to illustrations of a single stem.
Examples of her artwork:
Source: extracted from: Morrison, Gordon et al (2012) 'Capturing Flora: 300 years of Australian botanical art', Art Gallery of Ballarat, Vic.; http://www.artrecord.com/index.cfm/artist/13179-blyth-eliza/