MASON, (Mabel) Olivia

1872 - 1970

As Mabel Olivia Mason, she was born at Woolpit, Suffolk on 12 March 1872, youngest of the four daughters of John Mason, the local grocer & draper, and his wife Olivia Mary née Charles, who married at Woolpit in 1865. Both her parents and two of her sisters died shortly after her birth in 1872, John aged 28 and Olivia,sen. 29, Mary Ada 6 and Miriam 5; the two surviving sisters, Mabel Olivia and her elder sister Jessie Ethel, went to live with their uncle, Edwin Cuckow at High Street, Walton-cum-Felixstowe, Suffolk. In 1881, a 9 year old scholar living at High Street, Walton with 41 year old Edwin Cuckow, a grocer & draper, his 39 year old wife Emma and their 19 year old son Walter, together with her 12 year old sister Jessie. They were still living with their uncle in 1891, now a wine merchant at Stafford House, East View, Felixstowe and Mabel Olivia being described as a 19 year old artist. Known as Olivia Mason, she studied at Ipswich Art School, passing her drawing examinations in 1888 and was a painter in watercolour of flowers and landscapes and a member of the Ipswich Art Club 1934-1946 and a regular exhibitor showing 48 works 1928-1946 many of the subjects being flowers but some local landscapes. In 1934 she exhibited from 20 Garrison Lane, Felixstowe, five works 'Tuddenham', 'Dedham, Essex', 'Snowdrops', 'The Gipping, near Bramford' and 'Mary, wife of Dr. Graham Sleigh' and in 1937 six works 'A Summer Bunch', 'Cottages at Wattisfield, Suffolk', 'Butt and Oyster Inn, Pin Mill', 'Barges at Pin Mill' and 'The Rectory, Gt Canfield, Essex' other works including in 1943 'On the Orwell', 'Chrysanthemums', 'Spring Flowers', 'The High House, Otley', 'A Suffolk Cornfield' and 'Barge at Pin Mill', in 1944 five works 'Autumn Blossoms', 'A Christmas Offering', 'The Orwell from Pin Mill', 'Tulips' and 'Clopton Church, and in 1946 ‘White Wells, Ilkley Moor’. She also exhibited a portrait ‘Jack’ at the Royal Academy in 1916 from Gainsborough Cottage, Garrison Lane, Felixstowe, which was the address of the Misses Mason in 1916. In 1939 she and her sister Jessie were still living at 20 Garrison Lane, Felixstowe when her date of birth is given as 12 March 1875, but by 1875 both her parents had died. She died at Colchester, Essex in 1970, she was unmarried.