A painter who exhibited between 1882-1901 (W H Lane catalogue), and created a painting entitled Eagle's Nest, which formed part of the Reverend Griffin's Collection. At the time of the painting, the home belonged to Professor John Westlake and his wife Alice WESTLAKE. Later Eagle's Nest became the home of artist Patrick HERON.
Charles and his sisters were the children of John G Stiffe (b1827 in Bristol, Somerset) who was an architect and later an artist-sculptor, specialising in landscape painting. Their mother is as yet unidentified.
From Census data, it appears that Charles was the third child and only son in a family of five children, who lived together with a servant in London at 154 Alexander Road, South Hampstead. In 1881 his sister Maria (age 25) born in Paddington, is listed as head of the family, and his older sister, Helena, was a school teacher, born like Charles in Germany where his father worked for a period as an architect. That same year, their father (a widower) is listed as a visitor and landscape artist working in Yorkshire. He is known to have exhibited at the RA at least once.
Charles in 1881 is listed as an art student, while two younger sisters (both born in Wales) were still at school. By the time of the 1901 Census, their father had died and Maria, Helena and Katherine were living together as unmarried sisters in Folkestone Kent. Charles married in 1903 to Emily Wilhelmina (?surname) in Guildford, Surrey but it is not known, as yet, when the couple arrived in Cornwall. His younger sister, Katherine STIFFE, also an artist, had sending in addresses at Lelant, Cornwall (1913) and Launceston, Cornwall (1927) before leaving the county. His sister Helena died at Launceston, Cornwall in 1925.
Charles Stiffe died in Penzance, Cornwall on the 4th of May 1926; he and his wife Emily W are buried at the Eastern Cemetery, Lelant, near St Ives.
Painter in oil
works and access
Works incl: The Moorland Road (D Lay 2010); Untitled country lane (Bonhams, 2009); Horses Grazing (Bonhams, Edinburgh 2009); and as above: Eagle's Nest, Zennor.
A Continental Castle Court (signed and dated 1866 ?? same artist, as otherwise he would have painted this at the age of 3 (three)??), and definitely not the style or subject of later work. Since it is more architectural in style, it may perhaps be the work of his father, John G Stiffe (?).
RA (3); RBA (1); ROI (1)
misc further info
Correspondence with great-granddaughter where her grandfather emigrated in the early 1900s, and where she lives today (2011).
Maxwell Adams, Burial records, Eastern Cemetery, Lelant, Cornwall
Arcadja auction results (05/12/2011) lists 4 paintings sold in recent years (one doubtful as to same artist, perhaps his father)
Census (GRO) 1881, 1901
Johnson & Greutzner (2008 edition) British Artists 1880-1940
W H Lane & Son (24 Feb 2011 sale) No. 126
M Whybrow (1994) St Ives (list of visiting artists 1900-10)