Estella Louisa Michaela Canziani (12 Jan. 1887 – 23 Aug. 1964); British portrait and landscape painter, interior decorator, travel writer and folklorist.

Born in London, the daughter of the painter Louisa Starr and Enrico Canziani, an Italian civil engineer, she lived all her life in the family home at 3 Palace Green, in the grounds of Kensington Palace.

She trained as an artist, studying first at the Copernicus... then at the Royal Academy schools. She exhibited at the RA London, Liverpool, Milan, Venice and France. Her most famous work was a water color, The Piper of Dreams, exhibited at the Royal Academy in 1915. Reproductions of the work are said to have rivaled Holman Hunt's The Light of the World in popularity.

She traveled extensively throughout Europe, particularly in Italy. Her paintings document the clothes and lifestyle of the local people living in remote villages in Northern Italy. She also worked as a book illustrator.

She published 3 travel books: Costumes, Traditions and Songs of Savoy, Piedmont and Through the Apennines and the Lands of the Abruzzi; her writings gainied her membership in the Royal Geographical Society.... She also published an autobiography: Round About Three Palace Green.

...she was a Quaker and member of the Royal Society of British Artists, ... Royal Society for the Protection of Birds, Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals....

...fascinated by the traditional costumes, customs and folklore that were rapidly disappearing with the dawn of the 20th century. Her collection of artifacts, costumes, stories and legends together with the paintings and drawings she made are an invaluable record of the people of England, France and Italy among whom she lived. One hundred years after their first publication, her books are still in print and her illustrations are always sought after by collectors and historians.
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First Collected by

Suzan Hamer


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