Born in Newton Abbot, Devon, the son of a bank manager whose ancestors had crossed the River Tamar to Plympton from the Duloe, Morval area of East Cornwall a couple of generations previously. Hambly was educated at Kelly College, Tavistock, Devon. He studied at Newton Abbot School of Art under Wycliffe Egginton and Conway Blatchford, and repeatedly said that Egginton, whom he considered a great watercolourist of Dartmoor subjects, had been the strongest influence on his work.
He went on to Bristol Municipal School of Art where he studied etching under Reginald E J Bush. He completed his Art Teaching Diploma in 1925. After a brief spell teaching at Weston super Mare and then Salisbury Schools of Art, he moved to Cornwall and became Headmaster of Camborne and Redruth School of Art. He taught art at Redruth Boys and Camborne Girls County Schools along with day and evening classes He was also involved in the work of the Workers' Educational Association. Among his students at Redruth were Marion Grace HOCKEN and Sven BERLIN. Hambly considered Berlin to be the best and most hard-working student he had ever had. Together with his etchings and watercolours Hambly also designed the seal of the local Council, and the East Window above the High Altar in St. Andrew's Church, Redruth showing Carn Brea, Wheal Euny and Redruth Clock Tower.
He exhibited at RI from 1938 until 1966, at Royal West of England Academy from 1926 and at St Ives Society of Artists from 1929 until 1973. He became a member of RWA in 1964 after years as an associate member.
After WWII he suffered a bout of TB which prevented him working temporarily. In 1956 he took early retirement to allow himself more time to devote to his own painting. He left Redruth after a 30 year teaching career and went to live at Downside Vicarage, Chilcompton, Somerset, with Rev Lionel Greenway and his family. They had become great friends in the 1930s while Lionel Greenway was curate at St Andrews Church, opposite the Art School in Clinton Road, Redruth. He died following a heart attack in November 1973 and was buried in Downside Churchyard.
Painter of landscapes in watercolour; etcher and illuminator
works and access
Likeness of the Artist: A photograph of the artist in Tovey Creating a Splash (p226)
Works include: Lelant Church (c1928); Chapelporth, Cornwall (1928) now in Auckland AG
Near Acherton, Postbridge, Devon (1945) in Swindon AG
Somerset Landscape and Little Malvern Priory in RWA collection;
Access to work:
East window above High Altar in St. Andrew's Church, Redruth;
Mackelvie Trust Collection (Government Art Collection) Auckland Art Gallery, New Zealand
RA (2) 1951, 1962;
STISA Summer 1929 (his first), 1932, 1934, 1936, 1937, Spring 1947, Winter 1947, 1949 and 1951 Festival of Britain Touring Shows
1980 Chilcompton Village Hall (124 works)
Chicago Society of Etchers Exhibition 1920s
Buckman (2006) Dictionary of Artists in Britian since 1945
Hardie (2009) Artists in Newlyn and West Cornwall (p328)
Johnson & Greutzner (1975) Dictionary of British Artists
Pickford (1993) An Artist in Our Midst, Biographical Notes on Arthur C Hambly;
Tovey (2000) GF Bradshaw & STISA (Appendix 3: Principal Members of STISA 1927-1960);
Tovey (2003) Creating a Splash (STISA list 1927-52)
Whybrow (1994) St Ives (1921-39 list pp 219-21)