Image by/from St Edmundsbury Borough Council

Emma Rose Mead (4 December 1867 – late March 1946) would be a British born portrait painter who exhibited in the Royal Academy summer time exhibition and it was a friend of Augustus John. Mead would be a prolific artist who labored in a variety of fields – landscapes, street scenes, still lifes and flower studies alongside her portrait work, using both oil on canvas and watercolour in writing.

Mead was created in Bury St Edmunds, the daughter of the plumber, glazier and house painter. She was aged 20 before she’d any formal artistic training when she attended the Lincoln subsequently School of Art. She left there to review in the Westminster School of Art, working in london in 1892, underneath the tutorship of Ernest Brown before his appointment as Professor in the Slade School of proper Art. During this period she colored a self-portrait in the process of cooking. A business that made similar cookers offered £500.00 (£38,961.00 in 2007) to include their name, a sum she declined because she was reluctant to “prostitute” her art. Mead’s remain at Westminster was brief before getting to come back the place to find nurse her father. After his dying Mead studied under Auguste-Frederick Delecluse in Paris, in which a pastel portrait was exhibited in the Paris Salon. This same portrait was exhibited in the Royal Academy in 1896.

Mead came back to Bury St Edmunds in 1897 never, aside from the rare holiday, to depart again. Within the same year Cuisine en Boheme was proven in the Royal Academy summer time exhibition. Two painting Friday Morning at St Mary’s and My Mother were proven within the 1899 exhibition. Rose Mead nursed her mother until her dying in 1919, although earning money portrait painting, mainly commissioned by local dignitaries. In 1929 she visited Newlyn in Cornwall going to the existing Newlyn School of artists of this time. One figure study entitled Colored in Dod Procter’s studio in Newlyn a known consequence of the visit. In c. 1933 she visited the South of France, a watercolour of St Paul de Vence an eye on that point. The artist was known by locals to approach women and youthful women if she was attracted by a few characteristic, and would inquire if, using their parents permission, they’d gladly pose on her. Although painting she counselled them to not get wed, advocating these to find fulfilment inside a career, one sitter remembering that when the artist had discovered she’d married – “She felt which i had quite altered which were built with a harmful impact on my personality”. The artist never achieved the promise proven at the beginning of her career, it’s thought mainly due to the breaks brought on by the dying of her father and the necessity to take care of her mother until she was aged 52. She was discovered dead at the end of her studio stairs in Crown Street, Bury St Edmunds in the finish of March 1946 at age 78.