Peggy Somerville Sunshades, Aldeburgh, 1985
Postcard (S26) bin end - few remaining
Greeting card (SG12)

About the artist

(This text appears on the back of the greeting card)


Peggy Somerville (seen here on the left with her elser sister Rosemary) was a child prodigy who learned to paint at the same time that she learned to talk. When she was three some of her watercolours were selected for an exhibition held by the Royal Society of Drawing. At the age of seven one of her paintings, 'Happy Days by the Sea', was exhibited at the New Irish Salon in Dublin, having been chosen on merit by judges who knew nothing of her age. Her first one-woman 'retrospective' was held when she was nine at the Claridge Gallery in London. She was hailed as a child genius by newspapers throughout Britain and as far away as Boston, and, in a matter of days, each one of the hundred paintings on show had sold. In her adult life Peggy continued to paint and, during the early 1960s, she moved to Middleton, near Westleton in Suffolk. From here she made frequent excursions to the coast nearby, particularly to her beloved Aldeburgh.

After her early fame, her national reputation declined until she was rediscovered by the art historian Stephen Reiss during the period he was managing the Aldeburgh Festival. Partly because of his championing of her art, and partly because of her sister Rosemary's tireless devotion to her cause until her death in 2008, Peggy Somerville is now recognised as one of the most interesting of the later British impressionists.