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Dame Laura Knight RA RWS RE RWA PSWA (1877-1970)

Dame Laura Knight, RA RWS RE RWA PSWA (1877-1970)

Laura Knight exploited her versatility, verve and clarity of vision, so proving how a woman could be as successful and serious an artist as any man in twentieth century Britain.

She was born in Long Eaton, Derbyshire on 4 August 1877, and grew up in the house of her grandmother. Her father abandoned the family at the time of her birth, and her mother had to support the children by teaching drawing in Nottingham. Laura was educated at Brincliffe, in Nottinghamshire, and received lessons in art from her mother and under Wilson Foster at the Nottingham School of Art (1890). When her mother became too ill to work, the fourteen-year-old Laura took over her work as an art teacher in the Castle Rooms, Nottingham.

In 1894, Laura moved to Staithes in Yorkshire with Harold Knight, a fellow student of the Nottingham School of Art, and in 1903 became his wife. In that year, her first painting to be accepted by the Royal Academy was bought by the artist, Edward Stott.

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