Bess Norriss Tait (1878 - 1939)Bess Norriss Tait (1879-1939), was born in Melbourne and studied under Frederick McCubbin and Bernard Hall at the National Gallery School between 1897 and 1901. As a student, she sent examples of her miniatures to London, as a consequence of which she came to work in England. She left Melbourne in 1905 and in London quickly attracted a fashionable clientele for her original style, one that broke with what she called the 'superficial, pretty, chocolate-box' method of miniature painting.
She married Australian theatre entrepreneur James Nevin Tait (1876-1961) in London in 1908 and returned with him to Australia two years later. She returned to London in 1911 and settled in Chelsea. Bess Norriss Tait's many patrons included artists and musicians as well as figures such as J. Pierpont Morgan and Queen Alexandra.