‘Under the Jacaranda’ by Godfrey Rivers painted in 1903 hangs in the Queensland Art Gallery at South Brisbane and is believed to be the source of all Jacaranda trees that are growing in Brisbane.

The art work was painted by Rivers 13 years after arriving in Australia from England and illustrates  early twentieth-century life in Brisbane. The subject of the painting reflects the popular tradition of ‘taking tea’ in a beautiful outdoor setting and depicts the artist and his wife, Selina, under the shade of a jacaranda tree in full bloom in the Brisbane City Botanic Gardens.

 Under the Jacaranda, Godfrey Rivers, 1903.

Under the Jacaranda, Godfrey Rivers, 1903.

The jacaranda, planted by the Gardens’ Superintendent in 1864, is almost certainly the first one grown in Australia. Seeds of the native South American species were brought to Brisbane that same year and by 1875 about 50 000 seeds and cuttings had been distributed in Queensland. Many of the jacarandas now growing in Brisbane suburbs are the offspring of this first tree.

Oh how I wish I could take tea under the Jacarandas.

You can see this beautiful artwork for yourself as it hangs proudly as part of the Australian Collection at the Queensland Art Gallery. Read more about this artwork and its artist here and be sure to enter my ‘Under the Jacaranda’ competition on Instagram.

‘Under the Jacaranda’ 

Where – QAGOMA – Stanley Place, Cultural Precinct, South Bank, Brisbane

When – Daily

Website – www.qagoma.qld.gov.au