founded in 1927 
ANNIE OVENDEN 
 
 
Annie Ovenden was privately educated at The Royal Wanstead School and from there, in 1961 went on to study at High Wycombe School of Art, gaining NDD in book illustration and graphic design in 1965. She worked as a graphic designer and painter in London for several years before moving to Cornwall in 1973. 
 
In 1975 Sir Peter Blake asked her to join a group of seven like minded artists, the group was subsequently called The Brotherhood of Ruralists. The Brotherhood’s first public showing as a unified entity took place at the Royal Academy in 1976 followed by the Bath Festival in 1977. From these showings until 2007 the Ruralists maintained a vigorous exhibition program. In 1981 a major exhibition of work by the Ruralists - presented, not so much as a retrospective, but more as a report on work-in-progress - was organised by The Arnolfini, Bristol and The Camden Arts Centre, London. Funded by The Arts Council of Great Britain, the exhibition included visits to Birmingham City Museum & The Third Eye, Glasgow. The Ruralists final show together was at Horsham Museum in 2007. In 2008, a major touring exhibition was organised by Southampton University on the English Pastoral Tradition subtitled From Samuel Palmer to the Ruralists.  
 
 
 
(WWW.ruralists.com) is the The Brotherhood of Ruralists Information Website which is intended to provide free information for collectors, researchers, commercial organisations and the general public about the work, lives and activities of the group of artists known as The Brotherhood of Ruralists). 
 
 
 
Annie Ovenden taught Painting and Drawing for seventeen years for North Cornwall’s Adult Education Service. She has had many solo exhibitions and is an Honorary member of the South West Academy of Fine and Applied Arts. She has designed theatre sets and props and for four years worked with London’s Hampstead Garden Opera on sets for The Magic Flute, Hansel and Gretel, La Traviata and Martha.  
 
Despite Channel 4's repeated showings of a film about her Village Portrait Project she is probably best known for her tree studies and paintings depicting the landscape of Cornwall where she lives. Her work is in many private collections worldwide and appears in various publications. 
 
 
 
EXHIBITIONS 
 
 
 
THE RURALIST EXHIBITIONS 
 
1976 Group showing at the Summer Exhibition. Royal Academy of Arts, London. 
 
1977 Festival Gallery, Bath. 
 
1977 Fine Arts Society, Edinburgh, Scotland. 
 
1977 Doncaster Museum and Art Gallery. 
 
1977 Southampton University Art Gallery, Hampshire. 
 
1978 Bodmin Fine Arts, Cornwall. 
 
1978 Born Gallery, Basingstoke. 
 
1978 Southampton City Art Gallery, Hampshire. 
 
1978 Southampton University Art Gallery, Hampshire. 
 
1978 Upottery Arts Festival, Devon. 
 
1979 Gainsborough’s House Museum, Sudbury. 
 
1979 Charleston Manor Festival, Sussex. 
 
1980 Ophelia. Bristol City Museum and Art Gallery, Avon. 5 July - 2 August 
 
1981 Ophelia Wren Library, Trinity College, Cambridge. 
 
1981 Ophelia Arnolfini, Bristol, Avon. 11 April - 16 May 
 
1981 Ophelia Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery. 28 May - 28 June 
 
1981 Ophelia The Third Eye Centre, Glasgow, Scotland. 18 July - 8 August 
 
1981 Ophelia Camden Arts Centre, London. 19 August - 27 September 
 
1983 The Definitive Nude. Tate Gallery, London. (As part of the Peter Blake Exhibition) 
 
1983 Devizes Museum and Art Gallery, Wiltshire. 
 
1984 Exhibition to Commemorate the 50th Anniversary of the death of Edward Elgar 
 
David Paul Gallery, Chichester. 
 
1985 The Continuing Tradition. David Paul Gallery, Chichester. 13 May - 5 June 
 
1985 The Continuing Tradition. Tunbridge Wells Art Gallery and Museum 
 
1985 The Continuing Tradition. Devizes Museum and Art Gallery, Wiltshire. 
 
1985 The Continuing Tradition. The Fine Arts Society, Glasgow, Scotland. 
 
1985 The Continuing Tradition. Lambrays Gallery, Wadebridge, Cornwall. 
 
1985/6 The Continuing Tradition The Piccadilly Gallery, London. 26 November - 10 January 
 
1989 The Secret Garden. Centre for Caring and the Arts, Bleddfa, Wales. 
 
1989 The Secret Garden. Oriel Gallery, Welshpool, Wales. 
 
1989 The Secret Garden. Machynlleth Festival, Wales. 
 
1989 The Secret Garden. Devizes Museum and Art Gallery, Wiltshire. 
 
1989 The Secret Garden. The Arts Centre, Cwybrn, Wales. 
 
1989 The Secret Garden . Sterts Arts Centre, Upton Cross, Cornwall. 
 
1989/90 The Secret Garden. The Piccadilly Gallery, London. 30 November - 12 January 
 
1990 Exhibition of Photographs by Ruralists & Friends. Editions Graphiques Gallery, London 
 
1990 Alice. Bearnes, Rainbow, Torquay, Devon. 6 August - 17 August 
 
1990 Alice. The Tabernacle, Machynlleth, Wales. 20 August - 31 August 
 
1990 Alice . Plymouth City Art Gallery and Museum. 13 September - 28 October 
 
1990 Alice . Christ Church Picture Gallery, Oxford. 3 November - 21 November 
 
1990/1 Alice. The Piccadilly Gallery, London. 27 November - 12 January 
 
1991 A Family of Friends. The Old School, Bleddfa, Wales. 21 July - 1 September 
 
1991 Alice. Parco Gallery, Tokyo, Japan. 
 
1992 Alice. Devizes Museum and Art Gallery. 6 June - 18 July 
 
1992? The Ruralists & Friends. Parade Gallery, Cheltenham. 
 
1993 The Tabernacle Cultural Centre, Machynlleth, Wales. 
 
1994 Museum of Modern Art, Machynlleth, Wales 
 
1995 Museum of Modern Art, Machynlleth, Wales. February to July 
 
1995 Sterts Centre, Liskeard, Cornwall. 
 
1995 A Mirror on Life. Devizes Museum, Wiltshire. 10 June - 29 July 
 
2000 Ruralist 2000 Exhibition. Barley Splatt, Cornwall. 30 September - 20 October 
 
2001 Ruralist 2001 Exhibition. Barley Splatt, Cornwall. 29 September - 13 October 2001 
 
2002 Ruralist 2002 Exhibition. Barley Splatt, Cornwall 
 
2003 The Brotherhood of Ruralists: Celebrating 3 Decades.  
 
Museum of Modern Art, Machylleth, Wales 
 
2005 The Pre-Raphaelites and the Brotherhood of Ruralist. The Leicester Galleries, London 
 
2006 Devizes Heritage Museum, Wiltshire 
 
2007 Horsham Museum, West Sussex 
 
 
 
PRINCIPAL EXHIBITIONS 
 
 
 
1990 Emblems of Enchantment, Silk Top Hat Gallery, Ludlow, Shropshire. 
 
1994 Plymouth Art Centre, Devon. 
 
1994 White Lane Gallery, Plymouth, Devon. 
 
1996 Bearnes, Exeter, Devon. 
 
1997 San Carlos, Highgate, London. 
 
1999 Mid-Cornwall Gallery, Cornwall. February 1999 
 
2000 The Beech Tree 1999-2000. The Phoenix Centre, Exeter, Devon. 
 
2000 The Rilla Mill Tree. Sterts Centre, Liskeard, Cornwall. 
 
2003 Portraits of a Village Community. Sterts Centre, Liskeard, Cornwall. 
 
2005 Recent Paintings. The Gallery, Cork Street, London. 
 
2006 Four Visions. The Gallery, Cork Street, London. 
 
2007 Recent paintings and Drawings. Twenty Twenty Gallery, Much Wenlock, Shropshire. 
 
2009 Christmas Exhibition. Twenty Twenty Gallery, Much Wenlock, Shropshire. 
 
 
 
 
 
REPRESENTATIONS IN MIXED EXHIBITIONS 
 
(excluding Ruralist Exhibitions) 
 
 
 
1989 Images of Paradise. Harewood House, Leeds 
 
1989 Other Worlds. Bearnes Rainbow, Torquay 
 
1993 Icons in Oil, Portraits from the Lambert Collection. The Tabernacle, Machynlleth, Wales. 
 
1993 Over the Rainbow. Bearnes Rainbow, Torquay, Devon. 
 
1996 Power of Image Exhibition. Berlin, Germany. (Representing England) 
 
1999 Group exhibition sponsored by North Cornwall District Council 
 
Indian Kings Centre, Camelford, Cornwall. 
 
1999 Couples. Plymouth City Museum, Devon. 
 
2000 Open Exhibition. South West Academy of Fine and Applied Arts, Exeter, Devon. 
 
2000 Marine House-at-Beer Gallery, Beer, Devon. 
 
2000 Stuckist Exhibition - The Real Turner Prize. The Pure Gallery, London. 
 
2000 Discerning Eye. The Mall Galleries, London. 
 
2001 May Magic. Barley Splatt Gallery, Cornwall. 
 
2001 Summer Exhibition. Royal Academy of Arts, London 
 
2001 Open Exhibition. South West Academy of Fine and Applied Arts, Exeter, Devon. 
 
2002 Open Exhibition. South West Academy of Fine and Applied Arts, Exeter, Devon. 
 
2003 Open Exhibition. South West Academy of Fine and Applied Arts, Exeter, Devon. 
 
2004 Open Exhibition. South West Academy of Fine and Applied Arts, Exeter, Devon. 
 
2005 Open Exhibition. South West Academy of Fine and Applied Arts, Exeter, Devon. 
 
2006 Open Exhibition. South West Academy of Fine and Applied Arts, Plymouth, Devon. 
 
2007 Open Exhibition. South West Academy of Fine and Applied Arts, Plymouth, Devon. 
 
2007 Elgar and the Pastoral Tradition. Sterts Art Centre, Upton Cross, Liskeard, Cornwall. 
 
 
 
CONTRIBUTIONS TO FUND-RAISING EXHIBITIONS AND SALES 
 
 
 
1997 Modern British Painting.Royal Clarence Hotel, Exeter, Devon.  
 
1998 Fund Raising Exhibition. Exeter Art Centre, Devon 
 
2003 The Dartmoor Trust. Delamore, Cornwood, Devon 
 
2005 Preserving Sterts. The Gallery, Cork Street, London 
 
2006 10 x 10. Widcombe Studios, Bath, Wiltshire 
 
2006 Christmas Crackers. Sterts Art Centre, Upton Cross, Liskeard, Cornwall