1913 - 2009

Ernest Greenwood

Ernest Greenwood was born at Welling, Kent on 12 February 1913, son of Owen Charles Greenwood (1877-1915), an engineer's toolmaker, and his wife Annie Mildred née Bradshaw, who married at Bethnal Green, London in 1903 and in 1911 were living at 23 Copeland Road, Walthamstow. His 38-year-old father died in 1915 and in 1921 Ernest was an eight-year-old living at 169 Crayford Way, Crayford, Kent with his 45-year-old widowed mother Annie, a boarding house keeper, and siblings Rose 17, born at Bristol, Charles 16, born at Walthamstow, Constance 15, born at Leyton and Lily 6, born at Welling with three boarders. Ernest was educated at West Hill School and at Gravesend Grammar School and in 1927 went on to study at Gravesend School of Art from where, four years later, he won a scholarship to the Royal College of Art, where he was taught by Gilbert Spencer (1892-1979) and Sir William Rothenstein (1872-1945). After a year spent at the British School at Rome, in 1935 he returned to the Royal College for a further year in the Etching School under Malcolm Osborne (1880-1963) and Robert Austin (1895-1973). While at the RCA he met Eileen Constance Messenger (26 May 1915-23 June 2008), a student in the Design School, and their first joint exhibition was held in her lodgings in Redcliffe Road, Chelsea and they married in 1939, and had one daughter Dorerlia E. (born 1943). At the outbreak of World War II, Greenwood was conscripted into the Royal Artillery and after a few months was transferred to the Army Education Corps and at the war's end, Ernest was working in the Rehabilitation School in Berlin. The horrors he saw around him inspired a major work, 'Resurrection' and, together with two other paintings of Berlin ruins, are now in the Ben Uri Gallery in London. On demobilisation in 1946, Greenwood was appointed art master to the Technical High School for Girls at Chislehurst in Kent and the rest of Greenwood's life was spent in education, both as a teacher and an inspector. Greenwood was a strictly representational artist who worked in two fields, portrait and landscape. His landscapes were usually Kentish or of continental scenes inspired by his travels. President of the Hesketh Hubbard Art Society 1960-1965, President of the Guild of Kent Artists, and President of the Royal Watercolour Society 1976-1984. In 1970, with Sir Hugh Casson (1910-1999), exhibited in Canterbury and in 1989 with John Ward (1917-2007) and Ken Howard (born 1932), at Tenterden and he held retrospective exhibitions at the New Metropole in Folkestone in 1972 and at Maidstone County Hall Gallery in 1997. A member of the Ipswich Art Club, he exhibited from Brushings Farmhouse, Broad Street, Hollingbourne, Kent in 1979 three pictures, 'The Deserted Track', 'The Escarpment' and 'Hollow in the Downs' and was a regular annual exhibitor. Ernest Greenwood died at Sittingbourne, Kent on 17 May 2009.

Works by This Artist