Charles Worsley

British / Aotearoa New Zealand, b.1863, d.1923

Bern, Switzerland

  • Presented by the Canterbury Society of Arts, 1932
  • Watercolour
  • 354 x 524mm
  • 69/501
  • 1892
  • View on google maps

Some of Charles Worsley’s favourite places for sketching were the picturesque towns and rural areas of Switzerland. He visited Bern during his travels through Europe with his wife, Beatrice, in the summer of 1892. Worsley was trained in an academic style and has painted this work in a very precise and controlled manner, recording accurately the details of the Bern street scene. He worked by making numerous sketches, then completing works in his studio. Initially his paintings were popular in New Zealand but by 1911 he was seen as being rather ‘old school’. Worsley was born in Devon and studied art in London, Antwerp and Paris. He settled in London and began exhibiting at the Royal Institute for British Artists in 1887, then at the Royal Academy in 1889. His wife, Beatrice, suffered from asthma and in 1896 they left England, arriving in New Zealand in 1898. They lived in a number of places, including Christchurch, before returning to Britain in 1920.