Francis A. Shurrock
Aotearoa New Zealand / British, b.1887, d.1977
Deidre Of The Sorrows
- Gifted by Florence Akins, 1997
- 190 x 125mm
Location: W A Sutton Gallery
Tags: landscapes (representations), melancholy, monochrome, natural landscapes, people (agents), women (female humans)
Like Roland Hipkins, Robert Field and William Allen, the sculptor Francis Shurrock studied at the Royal College of Art in London and immigrated to Aotearoa under the La Trobe scheme to take up a teaching position at one of the country’s art schools. Francis, or Shurrie as his students fondly called him, taught at the Canterbury College School of Art in Ōtautahi Christchurch, where he offered a contemporary, modern outlook on art that was in contrast to the conservative atmosphere of the school at that time. Francis owned a large collection of ukiyo-e Japanese woodblock prints, which he made freely available to his students and friends. He began making linocuts in the late 1920s and wood-engravings in the early 1930s, encouraging many of his students to use these mediums in their practice.
Ink on Paper: Aotearoa New Zealand Printmakers of the Modern Era, 11 February – 28 May 2023
In Deidre of the Sorrows Francis Shurrock conveys the British legend of Deidre, the daughter of King Conchubar of Ulster. It was prophesied that Deidre’s beauty would bring trouble and sorrow to many so her father sent her to be brought up in isolation. Shurrock conveys the young woman’s deep sense of loneliness in this work. Although better known for his sculptural work, Shurrock produced several linocuts during the 1920s and 1930s. Born in England, Shurrock received a Royal Exhibition Scholarship in 1909, which enabled him to study at the Royal College of Art, London. He came to New Zealand in 1923 to teach at the Canterbury College School of Art. He held the position until 1948. Shurrock exhibited with the Canterbury Society of Arts and served on its council. He also exhibited with The Group in Christchurch and with the Royal Academy in London. After his retirement he worked on private sculptural projects.