Born at Stocking Pelham Rectory, near Bishops Stortford, Hertfordshire Alfred was one of four sons of Revd Charles Hartley, rector of Stocking Pelham and his wife Hannah nee Welsh, who had married at Camberwell in 1848. His studies were taken at Royal College of Art, South Kensington, and at Westminster School of Art under Brown. Moving back to Camberwell with his family and then to Dunmow, Essex, he was a member and exhibitor at the Ipswich Art Club from 1891-1903, and described as a member of the Royal Society of Painter-Etchers and Engravers.
He married at Hastings, Sussex on 5 May 1896, Leonora LOCKING (1856-1943), also an artist and in 1901 the couple were staying with wealthy 41 year old Annie Gurney at 18 Palace Garden Terrace, Kensington.
Hartley moved to St Ives with his wife, aka Nora, in 1904, living consecutively at two addresses on Bellair Terrace (No 7 being one of these). They joined the St Ives Arts Club in 1906. During his time in St Ives, Hartley was known as a master in etching and coloured aquatint, and went on to develop an international reputation for print work.
In 1907 he exhibited and sold the etching An Essex Stream at NAG. He also founded the New Print Society in St Ives, and in 1911, 1913 and 1924 exhibited at St Ives Show Days. In 1924, both he and his wife showed work from their travels to Bordighera, Italy, Alfred showing charming small pastel studies, Nora painting the streets and the town. He was a master at evocative atmospheric effects, though in his later years he became crippled with arthritis. He died in the East Preston district of Sussex in 1933, aged 78.
Painter of portraits and landscapes in oils; etcher and aquatint artist
works and access
Works include: Herring boats, St Ives (c1912); Polperro (1919); The Cornish Riviera; Golden Rain; Daybreak; The Hidden Moon (1913); Autumn (1914); Dartmoor study (1914); Trianon Gardens, Versailes (1914); Evening at Polperro; At the Boat Builders (aquatint, 1917); Early morning in the Alps (1920); Hayle; Between Showers (1923); A Windy River; A Rencontre (1923); A Road in Provence; At St. Paul du Var (aquas, 1924); Night Time (etching, 1929); Sunny Afternoon in Dorset (1926)
St Ives March 1911, 1912 (Black & White studies), March 1913, Summer Permanent exhibition 1913, May 1919, May 1920
Royal West of England Society October 1919
Lanham's March 1913 - March 1920
Porthmeor Gallery Show Day March 1915
NAG September 1920-29
Plymouth Art Gallery November 1917 (awarded a Silver medal)
The Exchange, Penzance 'Print!' Apr-Jul 2011: Contemporary and historic prints/printmakers
misc further info
With thanks to Tony Copsey for added information (2013).
Cornishman 7 Jul 1926, 8 Dec 1926
Cornishman & Cornish Telegraph 8 Aug 1928, 10 Jul 1929
St Ives Times 25 Mar 1911, 10 May 1912, 28 Mar 1913, 1 Aug 1913, 17 Oct 1913, 28 Nov 1913, 2 Jan 1914, 6 Feb 1914, 6 Mar 1914, 27 Mar 1914, 8 May 1914, 19 Mar 1915, 29 Jun 1917, 9 Nov 1917, 14 Mar 1919, 16 May 1919, 23 May 1919, 25 July 1919, 12 Dec 1919, 20 Feb 1920, 5 Mar 1920, 19 Mar 1920, 16 Apr 1920 [from WMN], 14 May 1920 [from WMN], 14 May 1920, 28 May 1920 [from Daily Mercury 14 May 1920], 3 Sep 1920 [from WMN], 23 Mar 1923, 6 April 1923, 21 Mar 1924
Chanter, C (2012) His Beloved St Ives, The Painter Gerard Wagner (photo & painting images)
Hardie (1995) 100 Years in Newlyn: Diary of a Gallery
Hardie (2009) Artists in Newlyn and West Cornwall
Johnson & Greutzner (1975) Dictionary of British Artists
NAG Exhibition Records
Newton et al (2005) Painting at the Edge
Tovey (2000) GF Bradshaw & STISA (Appendix 3: Principal Members of STISA 1927-1960);
(2003) Creating a Splash;
(2009) St Ives: Social History;
(2010) Sea Change;
Wood (1995) Victorian Painters