Diamond Valley

Lilian Lucy Davidson
Lilian Lucy Davidson (1879 - 1954) was born at Castle Terrace Bray. She is famous for her portraits and also for her landscapes, many of which feature the beautiful Wicklow Hills we can see from Diamond Valley.

Wicklow Goats by Lilian Lucy Davidson

Wicklow Goats, by Lilian Lucy Davidson. Watercolour on Paper, 23cm x 28.5cm.

Lilian lived in Bray until she was 18, by which time both of her parents had died and she moved with her siblings to Rathmines to live with an aunt. She attended the Metropolitan School of Art in Dublin and won prizes in 1895, 1896 and in 1897. She won the RDS scholarship that carried a free studentship, which allowed her to travel extensively.

She began exhibiting with the Water Colour Society of Ireland at the age of nineteen and exhibited there every year until her death in 1954. In 1914, Davidson began showing at the Royal Hibernian Academy, contributing over 130 paintings in the forty years that followed. She became an associate member of the RHA in 1940. She also exhibited with Munster Fine Art Club and the Dublin Painters Group. Davidson was best known for her portrait, genre and landscape paintings. She was close to many of her contemporary, fellow Irish painters and held a joint exhibition with Mainie Jellet in 1920 and also taught artists Bea Orpen and Kitty Wilmer at her studio in Earlsfort Terrace, Dublin. Among her portrait subjects were Jack B.Yeats, Sarah Purser, A.E. George Russell, Austin Clarke and Joseph Holloway. She taught in several art schools and worked for a time in France, Belgium and Switzerland. By 1936, she had exhibited her paintings in a number of European and American cities including Paris, London, Amsterdam and Chicago.

Her paintings are on display in the National Gallery of Art, the Hugh Lane Municipal, the Abbey Theatre, the Crawford Municipal Art Gallery in Cork, amongst others. Lilian died on 29 March 1954 at 4 Wilton Terrace, Dublin. She was buried in an unmarked grave in Mount Jerome Cemetary, Dublin. Her parents are buried in St. Paul's Graveyard, Bray.

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