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MAYER, Ernst Karl Erich

Born: 1876 04 19
Died: 1960 08 10


Born in Karlsruhe, Germany, Erich MAYER made a name for himself in South Africa as a watercolourist. His oil paintings are also much prized. The size of his paintings were mostly quite small and he had a particular interest in depicting the bush landscape of the high veldt. He studied architecture at the Charlottenburg Technische Hochschule, Berlin, 1894-1896, and came to South Africa in 1898 where he worked as as assistant land surveyor at Vrede in the Orange Free State. During the Anglo-Boer War he joined a Boer commando, was captured at Mafeking and sent to St Helena. In 1903 he returned to Germany where he studied art. Again for health reasons he returned to South Africa and in 1904 was in South West Africa (Namibia); although trained in architecture, MAYER never worked in this discipline, so far as is known, in South Africa. He died in Pretoria, respected as a painter.

(Ons Kuns 1; Berman 1983)

All truncated references not fully cited in 'References' are those of Joanna Walker's original text and cited in full in the 'Bibliography' entry of the Lexicon.

Books citing MAYER

Berman, Esmé. 1983. Art and artists of South Africa: An illustrated biographical dictionary and historical survey of painters, sculptors and graphic artists since 1875. Cape Town : Balkema. pp 43, 140, 244, 279-281, 355, 372, 431, 513, 514

HSRC. 1977. Dictionary of South African Biography Volume III. Pretoria: Tafelberg for The Human Sciences Research Council. pp 589-590

Potgieter, DJ (Editor-in-chief). 1972. Standard Encyclopaedia of South Africa [SESA] Volume 7 Lit-Mus. Cape Town: Nasou. pp 257-258

SABC. sa [1959?]. Our Art 1. Pretoria: Lantern / SABC. pp 91-95