Miss Bertha Newcombe was a figure, landscape, portrait and flower painter.
Newcombe was a friend of George Bernard Shaw. In the spring of 1892 he was sitting for his portrait at her studio at 1 Cheyne Walk, Chelsea. She was an active exhibitor, showing at the Royal Academy, Royal Institute of Oil Paitners, Royal Institute of Painters in Water Colours, Society of Women Artists, Fine Art Society, Dudley Gallery, London Salon, New English Art Club, and Society of British Artists, a society which elected JW its President in 1886. In 1888 she became a member of the New English Art Club, that is, the year in which JW exhibited with the group.
Newcombe was amongst those proposed invitees to a dinner organised by W. C. Symons to congratulate JW on becoming an Honorary Member of the Royal Academy of Munich, a dinner which was to be held at the Criterion in Piccadilly on 1 May 1889 (#00631).
In 1881 Newcombe was registered as staying with Nathan Bowes, a 53 year old fellmonger wool merchant employing 13 men, and 41 year old Marianne Bowes, at 14 Windsor Road, Camberwell. In 1901 she was living in Chelsea.
UK census 1881, from http://www.familysearch.org (accessed 2004); UK Census, 1901; Johnson, J., and A. Gruetzner, Dictionary of British Artists 1880-1940, Woodbridge, 1980; Weintraub, Stanley (ed.), Bernard Shaw: The Diaries, 1885-1897, Pennsylvania, 1986.