Ernest Thesiger

The Artist


Ernest Thesiger originally trained to be a professional fine artist, enrolling at the Slade School of Art, London, and studying under Henry Tonks. In the early 1900s, Ernest traveled through Europe and as far as North Africa, producing landscapes in watercolor from locations in France, Italy, Corsica, Madeira, and Morocco.  He continued to paint throughout his life, working primarily in watercolor.

Partial List of Exhibitions:

1906  The Modern Gallery, London.  Sketches of Spain, Corsica, and Italy, watercolors.

1907  The Modern Gallery, London.  Madeira and Morocco, watercolors.

1912   Sketches of Montenegro, Bond Street, London, November.

1913   The Modern Gallery, London.  Italian Lakes and London Churches, watercolors.

1916  The Modern Gallery, London.  One-man show. May. Profits donated to the Red Cross.

           Caledonian War Fair in aid of the War Funds.  Ernest participates with William Ranken as pavement artists.   June 6 - 7.

1918   The Modern Gallery, London  Exhibition of watercolors. February.

1920   The Royal Amateur Art Society, exhibition at the home of Sir George Cooper, Grosvenor Square.

            Ernest wins a silver medal. May.

1922   The Royal Amateur Art Society, exhibition at No. 27 Grosvenor Square by permission of

           Mr. and Mrs. Robert Fleming, in aid of London Nursing Charities.  Watercolors. May 14, 15

1923  The Royal Amateur Art Society,  exhibition at the home of Dame Alice Godman, 45 Pont Street, S.W.

           Ernest wins prize for two landscapes. May.

1924   The Royal Amateur Art Society, exhibition at the home of the Hon. Mrs. Robert Lindsay, London.

            Watercolor flower studies.

1932   The Fine Art Society.  Watercolors. July

            The Prince’s Galleries, London.   One-man show of watercolors depicting landscapes of Lake Como,             English towns, and New York.  October.

1936   Fine Art Society.  Exhibition of Flower Portraits.  Watercolors. October

1938   Actor Painters Exhibition at the Wertheim Galleries, May.


           Fine Art Society.  Flower Portraits.  December

1939   The Goupil Gallery, London.  Exhibition of sketches of Malvern Festival personalities.

1941   “Military Objectives?”  Exhibition of works depicting bombed London churches. 

           Bond Street, London, June.

Surrey Pines,  on display at the Grainger Museum, Melbourne

Ajaccio, Corsica, 1906

Venice Sunlight, Shade. 1906

Grand Curral, Madeira, 1907

Street Scene, Morocco. 1907

Californian Desert, c. 1935

Spring Flowers

Ernest on the set of “Bride of Frankenstein,” 1935, showing his California landscapes to fellow cast members Colin Clive, Boris Karloff, and Elsa Lanchester.

The Graphic, July 16, 1927

British Lilies

Mixed Bunch, 1939

A Spring Bouquet, 1939 

Ernest sketching Lady Mary Meade at Lady Carson’s garden party in aid of the Children’s Country Holiday Fund, 1928.

Surrey Landscape

Toledo, 1905

Wild Flowers, 1938

Flower painting given by Ernest to his friend Hilda Moore, possibly as early as 1910 when they both appeared in the play “Inconstant George.”  The painting was kept in the family of Hilda’s son (stage name Mike Raven) until it was sold in 2015.  Collection of HL Tyler.

Portrait of Percy Grainger, 1903

Ernest often made sketches for charity.

1916, Imperial War Museum

The Thames at Westminster, 1904

Paintings known to exist but for which there are no images:

Portrait of a Lady; oil on canvas, 1900

A Quiet Corner of the Garden; watercolor

At Tremezzo; watercolor, 1912

Midtown and Uptown, New York; watercolor, 1932

Chelsea Old Church after destruction by a German bomb by an air raid on the night of 16th/17th April, 1941; watercolor, V&A museum



The Sketch, October 19, 1932


This painting was given by Ernest to Mr. and Mrs. John Steynor on the occasion of their marriage in Malvern in 1939.  Ernest was a friend of the Steynor family, which included the pianist Dudley Steynor.  Image courtesy of Tony Steynor.

Ajaccio, 1906

Exhibited at The Modern Gallery, London, 1906.

Collection of HL Tyler.