KNOWLAND, Dennis George

1918 - 1985

Dennis George Knowland was born at 28 Carysfort Road, Stoke Newington, London on 14 January 1918, one of the seven children of Albert James Knowland (27 August 1885-14 December 1984), a tobacconist & newsagent later a wine & spirit merchant, and his wife Maria Maud née Sturley (19 March 1887-6 January 1949), who married at Shoreditch Parish Church on 28 September 1908 and in 1939 were living at 15 Princes Crescent, Hove, Sussex. After encouragement in his painting from Rod Dunlop, in 1935 Dennis attended Chelsea School of Art where he was taught by Graham Sutherland (1903-1980) and Robert Medley (1905-1994), winning a prize for landscape painting. In 1939, Dennis was living on the Barge Yacht 'Martin Luther' at Blackshore, Southwold, Suffolk, with his future wife Irma Nixon-Smith (11 June 1914-26 July 2011) and siblings, Albert Garibaldi Walter (19 May 1910-20 February 1945), a journalist who was killed on war service; Victor Henry Irving (10 May 1913-19 January 1997), an artist and his wife, Irene Lennox McFarlane née Cocks (15 March 1918-2003), an artist; Anthony Stephen (22 March 1919-10 December 2006), a university student; David A. (26 December 1923-1941), an art student and two others. Dennis served as an officer in the Suffolk Regiment during the Second World War seeing his army service in Scotland, being lent a studio by Anne Redpath (1895-1965), at this time he also worked on book illustration including ‘Bevis at Home’ by Richard Jeffries. After the war he obtained a government grant to continue his studies winning a place at Camberwell School of Art where his style developed, being tutored by many of the great names of the period, including Sir William Coldstream (1908-1987), Sir Lawrence Gowing (1918-1991) and Claude Rogers (1907-1979). A well-known painter in oils, of landscapes, figure subjects and interiors exhibiting with the London Group of Artists and New English Art Club, and extensively in the provinces including at Hawick Art Club in 1941 'Near Hawick, New Year's Day' and 'Hawick from the Teviot' also exhibiting abroad. Dennis married the wife of his late brother Albert, at Kensington, London in 1946, Irma Nixon-Smith (11 Jun 1914-26 July 2011), a costume designer and book illustrator, and their daughter Mary continues the family tradition as a potter and fine painter. Knowland examined for the University of London 1949-1972 and taught art in Oxfordshire, maintaining a riverside studio at Walberswick, Suffolk which was still in the family's possession long after his death. Dennis George Knowland died at 323 Woodstock Road, Oxford on 27 September 1985 and Irma died at College Farm Cottage, Little Minster, Minster Lovell, Oxfordshire in 2011. A memorial show was held at the Central Library, Oxford in 1987.

Works by This Artist