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Portrait of Paul Best.

Date: 1959
Overall: 365 x 302 x 15 mm, 0.75 kg
Medium: Watercolour on paper
Credit Line: ANMM Collection
Object Name: Painting
Object No: 00027078

User Terms

    This is a watercolour portrait of Paul Best, a Chief Engineer with the Pacific shipping line Burns Philp & Company in 1959.

    SignificanceThis painting is representative of the work by prolific amateur painter Brett Hilder, a seaman with Burns Philp and Company. His work offers a valuable and comprehensive record of the experiences of mariners working on commercial vessels between Australia, Papua New Guinea, Indonesia and Melanesia from the 1930s through to the 1960s.
    HistoryBrett Hilder born in 1911 was the youngest son of renowned watercolourist Jesse Jewhurst Hilder. In 1927 he became a crewmember for ships owned by Burns Philp & Co. He traveled extensively to the Dutch East Indies and South Pacific Islands, and eventually became a ship's master. During WWII he taught navigation to Australian air crew and attained the rank of Wing Commander. He flew on Catalina flying boats for the Royal Australian Air Force. After the war Hilder resumed his career as a merchant sea-captain. Hilder was Chief Officer on the MANGOLA in 1938 and then 1945 - 1946.

    During the war Hilder started painting watercolours depicting landscapes, details and portraits of the people and places he visited. He also wrote extensively about navigation and his travels for magazines such as 'Walkabout'. Hilder is the author of numerous books on his own experiences and in 1966 published 'The Heritage of JJ Hilder' a book about his father's art career. This accompanied a national touring exhibition of his father's work organised by the Queensland Art Gallery. Brett Hilder passed away in April 1981.

    Hilder started painting portraits in Malaya in 1946. He held an exhibition of his portraits in Sydney in 1950 and later exhibited works in Melbourne, Port Moresby, Honiara and New York.
    Additional Titles

    Web title: Portrait of Paul Best.

    Primary title: Paul Best, Chieft Engineer Burns Philp Line

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