BACK, Robert Trenaman

1922 - 2004

Robert Back

Robert Trenaman Back was born at Adelaide, South Australia on 4 October 1922, son of William Edward Back and his wife Dorothy Alice née Trenaman (17 August 1890-1963), who married at Kingston, Surrey in 1914. He was only aged fifteen when awarded the President's Prize of the Royal Drawing Society by The Princess Louise, Duchess of Argyll, for 'Old Tramp Being Towed Past Tilbury'. Robert studied at Edinburgh College of Art in 1940 and 1946-1949, under tutors William Gillies (1898-1973), Leonard Rosoman (1913-2012) and John Maxwell (1905-1962). His tuition was interrupted by the Second World War when he served in the merchant navy, and the sea turned into his hobby, being Norfolk Broads dinghy champion and an Olympic trialist. He married at Kensington, London in 1958, Denise Elizabeth Edwards (1928-7 November 2014) and they had two daughters, Clare and Alison. After his marriage he returned to teaching art at Seaford, Sussex, and built a studio in the attic of his cottage. In 1965 he crewed in the Admiral's Cup and the Fastnet Race and continued his sailing well into his sixties. A painter with a strong interest in marine subjects and a member and exhibitor at the Norfolk & Norwich Art Circle 1946-1953 from Oulton Broad, Suffolk. He exhibited at the Royal Society of Marine Artists and the Royal Scottish Academy also at David Messum and Malcolm Henderson Galleries. From 1983 he held a series of solo shows at The Atlantic Gallery, Washington, USA; Campbell College, Belfast with the United States Naval Academy, Annapolis, and the New Orleans Academy hold examples of his work. He lived at Seaford for some 46 years and an eccentric figure in the town. Robert Trenaman Back died at his home St Martins, 51 Steyne Road, Seaford, East Sussex in 2004.




Works by This Artist