For centuries, artists have flocked to Greenwich Park armed with sketchbooks, palettes and canvases. From celebrated international artists to local amateurs – generations of creative people have found inspiration here.
There are thousands of surviving images of the park - from oil paintings and watercolours to sketches and etchings. Each one represents an artist’s unique response to this special place.
Some of these works are grand oil paintings of iconic views, destined for the walls of stately homes or art galleries. Others are quick sketches of quiet corners, representing a fleeting flash of inspiration. A few were reproduced as souvenirs or printed in travel guides and magazines.
What all of these pictures have in common are the trees of Greenwich Park. Whether they are a focal point or a background detail, they stand proudly in all of these images – sometimes providing shade or shelter, other times framing a famous view.
These images allow us to track the ways in which the treescape of the park has changed since the seventeenth century. Explore our gallery to travel through time and see for yourself!
Painting of Greenwich Park from the south-east showing the Park and Tudor palace, c.1620Royal Museums Greenwich, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
Greenwich, with London in the distance, c.1680Yale Center for British Art, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
London and the River Thames from One Tree Hill, Greenwich Park, by Jan Griffier, the Elder c.1690Jan Griffier I, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
The Royal Observatory from Crooms Hill, c.1696Royal Museums Greenwich, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
London from Greenwich Park, by Peter Tillemans c.1720Peter Tillemans, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
View of Greenwich and the River Thames from Greenwich Park, c.1730Royal Museums Greenwich, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
One Tree Hill Greenwich, with London in the Distance by John Feary, c.1779Yale Center for British Art, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
Vanbrugh Castle, Greenwich by Samuel Hieronymus Grimm, c.1780Samuel Hieronymus Grimm, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons
View from Greenwich Park by William Pengree Sherlock, c.1795William Pengree Sherlock, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons
View of London from Greenwich Park by Joseph Constantine Stadler, c.1796Joseph Constantine Stadler, CC0, via Wikimedia Commons
London from Greenwich Park by Joseph Mallord William Turner, c.1809J. M. W. Turner, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
View from Greenwich Park by William Westall, c.1830British Museum, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
London from Greenwich Park by H. Mandeville, 1833Chevanne; H. Mandeville; Read and Co; Read, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons
Greenwich Park by Francis Nicholson, c.1900Francis Nicholson, Public domain, via Wikimedia Commons