Dorothy Moss Kay was born in Greystones, County Wicklow, Ireland, 1886. Kay (nee Elvery) studied at the Royal Hibernian Academy in Dublin. She came to SA in 1910 with her husband, Dr Hobart Kay, finally settling in Port Elizabeth in 1916. There was no local art society in Port Elizabeth, and she became a founder ofEPSAC in 1918. She also joined SASA in early 1919, and sent five paintings to the SASA Annual Exhibition. One of them was Marjorie aged Four Years(1918), a portrait of her daughter. In 1922, Kay sent a further work to Cape Town for the SASA list Annual Exhibition. This time, she entered a wooden inlay panel for a Welsh dresser entitled Tiger, Tiger. It garnered much praise and was also exhibited with EPSAC in Port Elizabeth and later in Johannesburg. Kay's daughter Marjorie Reynolds states that it was also published in The Studio magazine in London (Reynolds, 1989:34). Reynolds asserts that Kay had kept her membership of SASA over many years. She also relates how Kay decided to go to Cape Town for the opening of the SASA exhibition of 1941, where she had entered three portraits (1989:111). She was furious to discover that her large Portrait of William Pagel, the famous SA circus owner (now in the King George VI Art Gallery, Port Elizabeth) had not been accepted. Her other entries, which she thought "looked rotten", were chosen instead. She recovered her Pagel portrait from SASA and took it to the Maskew Miller Gallery, where it was immediately put on display (1989:112). The records indicate that this incident marked the end of her involvement with SASA. She died in Port Elizabeth, 1964.

Exhibitor on SASA-related exhibitions c.1898- 1950:

1919: SASA Art Exh., MH, City Hall, Darling St., 6 Feb. 

1922:SASA 21st Annual Exh., RH, City Hall, Darlmg St., 30 Jan. -18 Feb. 

1923: SASA 22nd Annual Exh., RH, City Hail,Darling St., 8 Feb. 

1940: SASA 37th Annual Exh., AG, Burg St., 29 Jan- 10 Feb.

1941: SASA 38th Annual Exh., SANG, 17 Feb. -31 Mar.

Collections in the Archives