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Artists’ Gardens Reports

Note: The Bucks Gardens Trust is updating a number of Artists  and their Gardens reports  now that museums, galleries and record offices are open. We hope to reinstate the reports under review by the end of 2021.

Please note that all these gardens are in private ownership and therefore are not open to the public.

The artists have been placed into two groups, an ‘A’ and a ‘B’ list. Click on the lists below to read the report on each artist.

Those in the ‘A’ group had the greater connections with their gardens and lived in the county for longer periods. The ‘B’ group includes those who were more transient and may not have been greatly influenced by their gardens.

The gardens are listed alphabetically by the predominant artist’s surname: in some cases more than one artist lived at the house, in some cases their partners were also artists. Some of the artists moved houses and these are then listed in chronological order (apart from John Nash, who appears in two reports).

There then follows a brief description of the artist’s life and career, where they studied, what type of media they worked in. The house includes a description of the building and the location in Bucks. The garden is where possible described using primary sources, paintings (a number of which are held by the Buckinghamshire County Museum collection), historic OS maps (available on the National Library of Scotland website) and Buckinghamshire Council’s Heritage Portal. Other resources are listed in the references at the end of the reports.

The last three sections look at the artists as gardeners, their inspiration from their garden(s) and their significance to Buckinghamshire.

The illustrations

Where possible we have tried to include current images of the house, and gardens, and we have also used images from the internet. We have permission to use images in the collection of the Buckinghamshire County Museum. However, many of the paintings are in private collections and large galleries, so as it would be prohibitively expensive for us to acquire licences to use them we have included links to websites where the artist’s work can be viewed.

The volunteers

Claire de Carle – Project leader; Clare Butler – Editor, researcher and administrator

Mary Buckle, Gill Grocott, Geoff Huntingford, Sheila Meekums, Gwen Miles, Joanne Mirzoeff, Sarah Tricks

Printable version below by pdf address:

‘A’ list
Callow, William
Gill, Eric and Jones, David
Jamieson, Alexander
Jopling, Louise
Nash, Paul and John
Piper, John
Richardson, Car & sisters
von Motesiczky, Marie-Louise
Whistler, Rex

‘B’ list
Cannan, Gilbert
Foster, Anthony
Hillesden Group
McKnight Kauffer, Edward
Mee, Margaret
Nicholson, William and Ben

23
Feb

Callow, William

William & Harriet Callow The Firs, Potter Row, South Heath, Great Missenden HP16 9LT The artists William Callow was born in Greenwich in 1812. He showed an early talent for drawing and at the age of 11 started work for an engraver, Theodore Fielding, where he served his apprenticeship and was taught watercolours by Charles...
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23
Feb

Cannan, Gilbert

Gilbert Cannan (1884–1955) & Mary Cannan (1868–1950) Artists who visited: Mark Gertler, Dora Carrington The Windmill, Rays Hill, Cholesbury HP5 2UJ The artists Cannan was a novelist and dramatist. He married Mary (a former actress) in 1910 after she was divorced from her previous husband, the author J.M. Barrie, because of her affair with Cannan....
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23
Feb

Foster, Anthony

Anthony Noel Henry Foster (1909–1957) Hilliers, Ellery Rise, Frieth RG9 6PH The artist Anthony Foster was a sculptor, woodcarver and one of a number of assistants to Eric Gill in the1930s when Gill required help with commissions for a number of large-scale works for London Underground and the BBC (MacCarthy). He worked with Gill at...
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23
Feb

Hillesden Group

Eric Mellon (1925–2014) and Martina Thomas (1925–1995) Derek Davis (1926–2008) and Ruth Lambert John Clarke and Mary Mansfield The Old Vicarage, Church End, Hillesden MK18 4DB The artists The Hillesden Group 1951 – 1955–7 This group of artists, which comprised three couples, lived and worked at the Old Vicarage, Hillesden which they rented for several...
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23
Feb

Piper, John

John Egerton Christmas Piper (1903–1992) Fawley Bottom Farmhouse, Fawley, Henley-on-Thames RG9 6JH The artist John Piper was one of the most important and versatile British artists of the twentieth century. Born in Epsom, Surrey, the son of a solicitor, he initially joined the family firm, but left after three years to attend Richmond School of...
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23
Feb

Richardson, Car and sisters

Josephine Mary Richardson (1869–1945) Caroline (Car) Beatrice Richardson (1873–1959) Woodhouse and Ridge House, Quill Hall Lane Amersham HP6 6UL Lavender Cottage, Chestnut Lane Amersham Downash (now The Old School House), Bois Lane HP6 6BP The Tithe Barn, Bois Lane Chesham Bois HP6 6BP The artists Josephine, Caroline (Car) and Mona were born into a military...
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23
Feb

von Motesiczky, Marie-Louise

Marie-Louise von Motesiczky (1906-1996) Cornerways, 86 Chestnut Lane, Amersham  HP6 6EP The artist Marie-Louise von Motesiczky was born into the cultured high society of Vienna in 1906. Her father Edmund, a Hungarian aristocrat with Jewish roots was a talented amateur cellist, who died when Marie-Louise was three. Her mother Henriette came from a wealthy family...
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23
Feb

Whistler, Rex

Reginald (Rex) John Whistler (1905–1944) Bolebec House, 7 Oving Road, Whitchurch HP22 4JF The artist Rex Whistler was born in 1905 in Eltham. He moved, with his family, to Farnham Common in Buckinghamshire in the 1920s just before he was accepted at the Royal Academy. He disliked the regime there and was ‘sacked for incompetence’....
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