Hobart Town1857

by Henry Gritten

Henry Gritten, the son of a London picture dealer, was an artist and photographer. After spending time in New York, he had moved to Melbourne by 1853.

After trying his luck on the Bendigo goldfields, Gritten realised that painting was more lucrative than prospecting. He then moved to Sydney, but eventually settled in Hobart, where he struggled with poor health and poverty.

Despite exhibiting in local art exhibitions, and pursuing publishing, his work met with ‘very little encouragement’. His precise paintings, often bathed in soft evening light, record the up-to-date detail of colonial cities like Hobart. This view, dominated by Mt Wellington, looks into Sullivans Cove. St George’s Church and Cowgill’s windmill, sit proud on Battery Point on the left.