Angus Gray

Aotearoa New Zealand, b.1906, d.1983

University Of Canterbury Buildings

Much of this view can still be seen today, looking across Rolleston Avenue from the Christchurch Botanic Gardens towards the city’s thriving Arts Centre. Established in 1873, the University of Canterbury (then Canterbury University College) site was gifted to the city in the 1970s when the University moved to its present location.

Angus Gray was a watercolourist who painted plein air scenes in a sketchy rapid manner. He took evening classes at the Canterbury College School of Art and gained many awards, although he was never able to become a completely professional artist.

From Capetown, South Africa, Gray’s family settled in Christchurch by 1909. Tailoring was a traditional occupation in the family and he did his apprenticeship with the Christchurch firm of J. Ballantyne & Co Ltd. Gray worked as a tailor for most of his life. He also always painted and in 1947 was awarded a two-year travelling scholarship to attend the Academy School in Rome. His retirement in 1975 allowed him at last to paint full-time.

Exhibition History