SMITH, Walter Azemberg

1838 - 1918

Walter Azemberg Smith was born at Heigham, Norwich on 3 April 1838 and baptised at St Stephen's Church, Norwich on 6 April 1838, son of Marian Smith. As a practising architect & surveyor in London he married at St Mary's Church, Islington on 14 December 1859, Emily Mary Smith née Moore, and their first two children, Beatrice Jessie in 1862 and William Moore Tyrrel in 1863 were born at Islington. Smith then returned to Norwich and in 1863 was working as assistant to the Norwich City Surveyor when he was engaged to design and project manage the building of premises for photographer John Sawyer's new 'Italian Studio' in Norwich and, on its completion in October 1863, Walter joined Sawyer's artistic department as a colourist. His third child Ernest Walter was born at Norwich in 1865 and later that year he moved to manage Sawyer's new Ipswich studio at 'The Italian Studio', a photographic artists business at 18 Upper Brook Street, Ipswich, a business which Smith purchased in 1867. Smith's advertisement in Morris's 'Directory of Ipswich 1868' states 'late J B Sawyer' and his wife Emily was an 'artist in oils' working in the business. A prize winning landscape artist and photographer, a member of Ipswich Fine Art Club 1883-1891, but was exhibiting from 18 Brook Street in 1881 ‘In Woolverstone Park’, 'Study of Trees in Mist', 'New Rottingdean, Brighton', 'Late Autumn on the Gipping', 'A Norfolk Broad', 'Harwich from the Hill above Shotley Ferry' and 'Trees in Christchurch Park', in 1882 he exhibited four works, 1883 nine works 'Study from Life', 'Near Nacton, on the Orwell', 'The Orwell from the Strand', 'On the Waveney', 'Sunset at Breydon', 'Moonlight on the Orwell', 'At Playford', 'The Pool, Christchurch Park' and a drawing 'Sketch near Hadleigh'. He continued to exhibit at Ipswich even after his move to Southampton, exhibiting from 1 Sussex Place, Southampton but occasionally also from an Ipswich address including in 1887 an oil 'An Ice Block on the Orwell' Whilst working at Ipswich, Smith won a silver medal for 'excellence in photographic portraits' at the Needham Market Fine Arts & Industrial Exhibition of 1867. In 1883 the Brook Street, Ipswich studio passed into the hands of John White when Smith subsequently entered a partnership with Edwin Debenham at 1 Sussex Place, Southampton, Hampshire trading as 'Debenham & Smith' the partnership was dissolved in September 1887 when Smith carried on the business alone. In 1911, Walter Azemberg Smith was living at 10 Forest View, Albion Terrace, Southampton where he died on 3 June 1918, aged 80. On 3 October 1918 there was an auction sale of his home and its contents.

Works by This Artist