Sir Hans Heysen
Extract from Village Voice 1, Autumn 2005
- Born in Hamburg Germany 1887
- Arrived in Australia with his family at the age of 7
- He always loved painting and sold his first work aged 15 for I0 shillings.
- Was sponsored by 4 businessmen to study in Europe for 4 years in return for the pictures he painted over there.
- Returned to Australia in 1903, held an exhibition in 1908 which enabled him to purchase The Cedars in 1912.
- Married Sally Bartels in 1904, they had 8 children, so extended the house twice to accommodate the large family.
- Thus it remains today under the shelter of huge cedars.
- Built a purpose designed studio in 1 91 3, which remains open to the public on guided tour today.
- Best known works feature gums in the vagaries of the light on the Australian landscape, but he was also well recognised for still life works , and for his works in the Flinders Ranges.
- He and Sally entertained well and often, on many occasions enjoying the company of the famous and elite. The kitchen and the drawing room still offer that gracious and homely welcome .
- Sir Hans was knighted in 1959
- He died 1968 and is buried beside his wife Sally in the Hahndorf cemetery.