Who was the first British woman painter elected to the Royal Academy?


Annie Swynnerton and one of her six sisters, Emily, were watercolour artists who sold their paintings to help with the family fortunes in their home town of Manchester.

In 1871, Annie attended the Manchester School of Art and then went to live in Rome where she continued to take art lessons. 

She moved to Paris and attended the Juliene School of Art and then returned to England in 1882 where she established herself as a painter of portraits and allegorical scenes.

She was supported by both G.F. Watts and Edward Burne-Jones and became renowned for her daring nude paintings.

In recognition of her work she was elected to the Royal Academy of Arts in 1922, the first woman artist to be granted the honour.

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