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Nineteenth Century New Zealand Artists: A Guide & Handbook

ORBELL, Rachel Susan Christabel née Buckland 1873–1946

ORBELL, Rachel Susan Christabel née Buckland 1873–1946

Born Waikouaiti, daughter of J. C. Buckland; went to a private school, Miss Duke's, in Dunedin where she met and became friend of Miss Fanny Wimperis. They painted together a great deal in Dunedin and environs 1880s and 1890s. About 1893 the Buckland family moved to Taieri Lake Station and Rachel Buckland painted many watercolours there. In 1901 she married Orbell in Winchester, lived at Geraldine for some years, then moved to Fairfield Farm at Pukeuri and spent much of her time there painting, often with Fanny Wimperis a guest at the farm. At times went to Dunedin to take further lessons, possibly with visiting Australian or English artists. In 1918 moved to Winchester, South Canterbury, where her best work was done, watercolours of the countryside. For one year she went in regularly to Timaru to take lessons. Worked sometimes in oils, mostly painting portraits, probably encouraged by her friend Fanny Wimperis, herself a portrait painter. Rachel Orbell was mother of Dr G. B. Orbell of Invercargill. Watercolours of Otago and Southland in Hocken.