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Vale William(Wim) Boissevain

One of our local “Hills” painters died recently at the age of 96, and his funeral will take place on Saturday 18th August at Karrakatta Cemetery.

William Boissevain was born in New York in 1927 his father was in the diplomatic service and consequently the family travelled the world. He trained in both London and Paris.

He was influenced by some of the greatest painters in European modern history such as Degas, Toulouse-Lautrec and Matisse, Boissevain recollects the time he spent wandering the vast corridors of the Louvre, studying works by such masterful artists. His drawings reflect the precision and skill of the great French masters while also embedded with the spontaneity of colour, line, and form.

Portrait of fellow artist Robert Juniper

After WW11 in 1947, Boissevain decided to join his mother in Perth, who like many postwar migrants had emigrated to Australia. He was naturalised in 1949. From 1951 to 1955 he taught drawing and French at Wesley College in Perth and, later he taught art at Perth Technical College.

The worldwide influences Boissevain experienced as a child can be seen in his bird and flower studies and his evocative Australian landscapes which have an almost oriental beauty. In 1959 he won the Claude Hotchin Art Prize. Claude Hotchin was a businessman and art dealer who had a residence “Chartwell Gardens” in Mundaring. In 1978 he was awarded the Order of the British Empire for ‘Services to the Arts”.

Wim Bossevain in his studio

Boissevain’s works are held in Collections across Australia, including the National Gallery of Australia, the National Portrait Gallery in Canberra, the Art Gallery of W.A. and the Art Gallery of Tasmania. His works are also held in many important private collections, including King Charles lll, Baroness Bentinck – Switzerland, the Emir of Bahrain and many more prestigious collections.

He lived in various homes in the Shire, first on Old York Road in Greenmount and in the 70’s the bottom of Smith St in Glen Forrest where he also had a studio. In later years he exhibited his work at White Peacock Studios in Glen Forrest.


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