YHAP, Laetitia Karoline

1941 - ?

Laetitia Yhap

Laetitia Karoline Yhap was born in St Albans, Hertfordshire on 1 May 1941. Her mother Liesel Karoline Kogler (18 February 1915-1996) married Dr Leslie Neville Yhap (1915-1987), a medical practitioner, in Kensington, London, in 1937 and in 1939 they were living at 18 Westgate Terrace, Kensington. Laetitia was educated at Fulham County Grammar school and in 1952 was presented with a big box of paints for her work in a children's painting competition for the International wool Secretariat by Harold Workman (1897-1975). She studied life drawing and ceramics at Camberwell School of Arts & Crafts 1958-1962 and then won a Leverhulme Research Award Scholarship which she spent travelling in Italy 1962-1963, studying Renaissance Art. On her return she went to live in Pakefield, Suffolk with Jeffery Camp [q.v.], who she had first met around 1960 through Euan Uglow (1932-2000), and in 1963 they married in Lowestoft, Suffolk. Laetitia then went to the Slade School of Fine Art UCL to complete her postgraduate studies 1963-1965 during which time had her first solo show, at Norwich School of Art, in 1964 and in 1967 had the first of three solo shows at the Piccadilly Gallery, Cork Street, London. In 1967, after the death of Jeffery's parents, leaving Suffolk they purchased a house in Clapham and another in Hastings. Jeffery Camp continued teaching at the Slade but Laetitia became disenchanted by London life and needed to concentrate on her work which took a radical change when, around 1974, she decided to focus once more on the human figure as subject matter, but Jeffery became more interested in making London an integral part of his subject matter. They separated amicably but did not divorce until Laetitia was 60. Michael Rycroft (born 1945), after having spent a few years fishing in Australia, arrived in Hastings and purchased a boat and a winch house and in 1982 became Laetitia's partner and in 1984 she gave birth to her son. After an intense period of research, in 1979 had her first exhibition of fishing paintings at the Serpentine Gallery in London and she also went off to sea to fully experience the daily life of fishermen. Laetitia exhibited regularly at the Royal Academy for over 30 years from 1974 and a major touring exhibition 'The Business of the Beach' 1988-1989 was organised by the Laing Art Gallery, Newcastle-upon-Tyne, which took the paintings as far north as Bewick on Tweed before returning to Hastings Museum and Art Gallery. Laetitia Yhap's work has been exhibited widely in solo & mixed exhibitions and is held in many private & public collections, including the Tate Gallery, British Council, Government Art Collection, Arts Council of England and in 2021 she celebrates with an exhibition at Hastings Museum & Art Gallery 'My Vital Life, Laetitia Yhap at 80'. Recently the British Library has recorded her telling her life story for their archive 'National Life Stories'.

Works by This Artist