Percy Leason (1889-1959)
The Student 1921
oil on board
28.5 x 38.7 cm
Gift of Howard Hinton 1939
Born 1889, Victoria. Died 1959, America.
Percival Alexander Leason left school to become apprenticed as a lithographic artist. He was a designer and illustrator for Sydney Ure Smith and Angus & Robertson’s publications. He was widely known for his comedy strip cartoons in the daily papers. As a painter he was influenced by the realist Max Meldrum, and remained essentially conservative in his ideas throughout his life.
In 1937 Leason visited America and settled the next year in New York. He continued working as an illustrator, teaching painting and exhibiting his work. He is represented in state and regional galleries and private collections in America. The Hinton Collection holds ten works by Leason.
It's possible that Howard Hinton imagined the students at the Armidale Teachers' College could make a connection with the subject of this work. Spare brushstrokes depict the male figure seated at a round polished wooden table. A book is open before him and he props his head up with his hand as he reads in the dim winter light. He is warmly dressed in a thick coat. A vase of pink flowers is featured in the centre of the image.