Works included in this catalogue
Strutt First Victorian Parliament, 1856 {1868} SLV [DR]
Strutt The Burke and Wills Exploring Expedition 1862 {1902} SLV [WT]
Strutt View of the Golden Point – Ballarat {by 1894} SLV [PR]
Ham (T.) after Strutt (?) Opening of Prince’s Bridge [2] 1851 {1868} SLV? [PR]

Although Strutt worked in Australia only between 1850 and 1862 (a relatively brief portion of his long career), Grishin (2013) describes him as “one of Australia’s most significant portraitists and history painters of the nineteenth century.”  His experience of the dramatic events of the 1850s and early 60s, including the Victorian gold rush, the formal separation of Victoria from New South Wales, and the Burke Wills expedition of 1860-61, all recorded in the detailed journals and sketch-books he kept during the period, also formed the basis for the pre-Felton works listed above.

However, his major paintings on Australian subjects, including Black Thursday, February 6th 1851 (1864) and The Burial of Burke (1911), both acquired later for the State Library of Victoria’s picture collection, date from after his return to England, apparently brought about because of lack of artistic opportunity in Australia.

Refs.

For Strutt, see The Australian Journal of William Strutt, ARA, 1850-1862 (1958); Heather Curnow, The Life and Art of William Strutt (1980); and Strutt, Victoria the Golden: scenes, sketches and jottings from nature, 1850-1862 (SLV, 1980). See also Kerr Dictionary (1992), pp.725-69 (entry by H.Curnow); Bénézit 13, pp.463-64; http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/William_Strutt; and Grishin Australian Art (2013), pp.89-90 (quoted)