Famed maritime artist paintings now hang in Nambucca museum

Two 19th-century paintings by famed Australian maritime artist William Edgar can now be viewed at Nambucca Headland Museum.

Museum volunteer Rachel Burns said one of the paintings is of the Alpha, built by Edward Davis of the local shipbuilding family and the other is the Prince Albert owned by local pioneer John Eichmann. 

Museum volunteer Rachel Burns with the W Edgar paintings. Photo supplied.

Museum volunteer Rachel Burns with the W Edgar paintings. Photo supplied.

William Edgar was born in Australia in the 1870s. He started out as a sailor, an occupation which gave him accuracy and a thorough knowledge of his subjects. Whilst working in Sydney, he built a reputation as an accomplished ship portraitist.

In his later life he moved to San Francisco where he settled and continued his profession. He has paintings in the Maritime Museum in San Francisco, the National Maritime Museum of London, among others and has many works in private collections all around the world. The Headland Museum in Nambucca Heads has two of his works.

“These paintings, which date from the late 19th century, give us an accurate record of these ships as well as bringing an international link to our museum,” Rachel said.

The paintings can be viewed at the Nambucca Headland Museum on Wednesdays, Saturdays and Sundays from 2pm to 4pm.