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Watercolour - St Anthony's Harbour - A fish drying establishment with seal skins drying.
  • St Anthony's Harbour - A fish drying establishment with seal skins drying.
    Bickerdike, Rhoda
  • Enlarge image

St Anthony's Harbour - A fish drying establishment with seal skins drying.

  • Object:


  • Place of origin:

    St Anthony's Harbour (made)

  • Date:

    1930s (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Bickerdike, Rhoda (artist)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Watercolour on paper

  • Museum number:


  • Gallery location:

    Prints & Drawings Study Room, level H, case WD, shelf 125, box C

Rhoda Bickerdike, née Dawson (1897-1992) came from a family of artists. Her father Nelson, (1859-1945) was a landscape artist and worked with her mother, Edith, designing metalwork. Rhoda Bickerdike also worked as a landscape painter, exhibiting at the New English Art Club and the Royal Academy. In 1930 she went to Newfoundland to work as a missionary. She returned to Britain in 1933 and staged two exhibitions of the paintings she had made during her travels. She went again to Newfoundland in 1934, staying in St. John's.

This watercolour showing St. Anthony's Harbour, Newfoundland was probably made in the mid 1930s during a visit that the artist made to this region of Canada. Stretching from the bottom left corner to the mid right of the composition are two long platforms known as flakes, at which figures are shown with their backs to us stretching out seal skins to protect the split cod drying on the Flakes. At the centre right, a figure carries an armfull of split cod to stack for the night in order to protect them from rain or dew. Behind the figures are a group of wooden fishery buildings in front of the sea. The outline of the work has been sketched in pencil before Bickerdike has applied vivid tones of blue, green and red watercolour. The viewpoint of the scene has a feel of a snapshot of everyday life conveying the intimacy with which Bickerdike knew the landscape through the time that she spent in Newfoundland.

Physical description

A watercolour on paper depicting two men and a woman working outside a fish-drying establishment with boats and seal skins.

Place of Origin

St Anthony's Harbour (made)


1930s (made)


Bickerdike, Rhoda (artist)

Materials and Techniques

Watercolour on paper

Marks and inscriptions

picture title; On label on old mount; typing; ink

1) Signature; Bottom right corner; writing; watercolour; Bickerdike, Rhoda


Height: 32.3 cm, Width: 49.4 cm

Descriptive line

Watercolour, 'St Anthony's Harbour' by Rhoda Bickerdike (neé Dawson), 1930s.


Watercolour; Pencil; Paper



Subjects depicted

Huts; Seashore; Workers; Seal skins; Seals



Production Type



Prints, Drawings & Paintings Collection

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