Yvonne Marjorie Drewry
1918 - 2007
18th February 1918
born in Brentford
Married Robert Campbell in Southport, Lancashire
9th August 2007
died in Suffolk
Yvonne "was a prolific artist, working in oil, watercolour, and pen and ink. She was also a notable print-maker and typographer. Her other work included woven textiles and handicrafts. Her work was exhibited regularly in Suffolk galleries, including an annual exhibition at the Denis Taplin Gallery in Woodbridge, Gallery 44 in Aldeburgh, Mall Galleries, Gainsborough's House, Sudbury, Wolsey Art Gallery, Ipswich, and in her own studio, and featured several times in local press articles; she also exhibited internationally and made sales in France and the US, and is licensed through Bridgeman Images."
"After studying at Southport College of Art, in 1939 Drewry won an Andrew Grant scholarship of £120 a year for three years to train at the Edinburgh College of Art, where she studied under William George Gillies, John Maxwell and book illustrator Joan Hassall."
Yvonne married Bob Campbell, whom she met at Edinburgh College of Art. In 1942 they moved to Trimley St Martin in Suffolk.
Yvonne and Bob published a small children's book: 'World Under Water, the Adventures of Matthew, Jill and Poco' (his words, her illustrations) at the Symbole Press in Essex. I have a copy of 'Matthew Explores', which claims to be the first of four parts. They went on to create a number of books (again his words her illustrations) on her own press. 'The Black Mill Press' was named for her house in Trimley St Martin " and later The Centaury Press (a reference to her favoured font, Bruce Rogers' Centaur typeface, as well as the flower)."
" She illustrated existing work, including Edmund Spenser's Prothalamion, or used Japanese haiku to inspire her own illustrations; she also produced a posthumous edition of the engravings of Viola Paterson, who was the niece of the painter James Paterson and mother of Drewry's friend from her Edinburgh college days, the artist Anne Paterson Wallace. " [Wikipedia]
For most of her working life, Yvonne was a teacher. She taught art at the Amberfield School in Felixstowe, as well as teaching evening classes and running painting and printing courses in her home.
" She was active in various art groups including the Deben (later Felixstowe) Art Group. Her pupils included Maggi Hambling, who cites her as a major childhood influence, and Malta based artist Juliet Horncastle." [Wikipedia]
"I respond to what happens in life, and I’ve always refused to do what anyone might tell me to do ... I don’t really think that I’m in charge. It goes back to the art teacher at school, Yvonne Drewry, saying, 'A subject chooses you, you don’t choose a subject.' " (Maggi Hambling)
Yvonne and Bob separated in the late sixties. He went to Canada by himself leaving Yvonne to look after and support four children on her own. She may have kept the name 'Mrs. Campbell', but she had always been 'Yvonne Drewry' as an artist and remained so.
"From 1985, Yvonne was part of the '8+1 Suffolk Group', a group of nine artists that could manage and present their own exhibitions. Their first show was at Broughton Gallery, Lanarkshire in August 1985.
"Yvonne's subjects were landscapes and seascapes celebrating the Suffolk countryside, along with still life pictures of flowers, plants and trees, including those growing in her own garden; she also produced occasional portraits. Her work was mainly figurative, although her later works were much more abstract in character, using vivid colours and broad brushstrokes.
"Yvonne is mentioned in Patrick Trevor-Roper's influential book 'The World Through Blunted Sight: Inquiry into the Influence of Defective Vision on Art and Character' (1970) as having different colour perception in each eye.
"Her works are rarely titled, and whilst the landscapes are clearly recognisable, they are not usually particularly well-known views, although she did paint Snape Maltings and Shingle Street.
"Yvonne was highly commended in the 1994 Laing Art Competition. She generally worked from life and traveled around Suffolk and Norfolk in a Fiat 238 camper van seeking suitable subjects."
David Bennett is the owner of a number of Yvonne's works and has given me permission to use some of his images this site.
I have included as many of the images that I can find in the Gallery here. I have edited some of his photos but all the original images can be viewed in David's Flickr pages.