This scholarship, instituted by G.F.Folingsby, was first awarded to John Longstaff in 1887. The terms of the award dictated that at least one original canvas and two Old Master copies from each recipient be added to the Melbourne collection.

Other recipients during the pre-Felton period were Aby Altson [1890], James Quinn [1893], George Coates [1896], Max Meldrum [1899]; and Meyer Altson [1902], whose works for the award were produced after 1905, and hence are not catalogued here (see linked artist entry for details).

Hugh Ramsay (1877-1906) was an unsuccessful applicant in both 1896 and 1899, losing out to Coates and Meldrum respectively. An art union organized by Longstaff and Baldwin Spencer enabled Ramsay to travel to Paris and London in 1900. However, ill health forced him to return to Australia in 1902: for further details and references, see * Ramsay Life study {1899} Loc? [PA].

In retrospect, the Travelling Scholarship probably played a contradictory role in the Australian art world of the late 19th and earlier 20th centuries.

In a negative sense, its academic emphasis on copying of Old Master paintings moored it (and the NGV, given the stipulation that the copies should be added to its collection) to an increasingly outmoded notion of what constituted Great Art in the era of early Modernism.

Conversely, though, it provided Longstaff and subsequent winners with a stimulating opportunity to visit Europe. The Scholarship (which was supported enthusiastically by Folingsby’s successor Bernard Hall, and remained in operation until 1932) also opened up opportunities for many of the painters who won the award, including a number of women, beginning with Constance Jenkins in 1908: see now Dwyer (2014).

Pre-Felton works acquired under the terms of this award:
Altson (A.) The Golden Age 1893 {1895} NGV [PA]
* Altson (A.) after Rembrandt An Old Man {1894} Loc? [PA]
Altson (A.) after van Dyck Portrait of a Lady of Rank 1891 {1892} NGV [PA]
Coates Motherhood {1904} NGV [PA]
Coates after Correggio Marriage of St Catherine {1899} NGV [PA]
Coates after van Dyck Portrait of a Father with his Son {1900} NGV [PA]
Longstaff after Titian Entombment of Christ {1889} NGV [PA]
Longstaff after Velazquez Aesopus 1890 {1890} NGV [PA]
Longstaff The Sirens {1894} NGV [PA]
* Meldrum Study from the Nude {1902} Loc? [PA]
* Meldrum after Tintoretto Portrait of a Gentleman {1903} Loc? [PA]
Quinn after Hals The Gipsy {1895} NGV [PA]
Quinn after Velazquez Infanta Margarita Teresa {1895} NGV [PA]
Quinn after David Madame Recamier {1895} NGV [PA]
Quinn after Botticelli Virgin and Child {1896} NGV [PA]
Quinn The Nativity {1901} NGV [PA]


See in particular Jillian Dwyer, “Constance Jenkins, her painting Friendly critics and the National Gallery of Victoria Travelling Scholarship,” Art Bulletin of Victoria 53 (2014): available online as See also Jillian Dwyer, ‘The “work” of art: the National Gallery of Victoria Travelling Scholarship 1887–1932’, MA thesis, Department of Visual Arts, Monash University, Melbourne, 1997