Photograph of Robert Gibbings (1914) reproduced from Matrix 9



Winter 1989


Z119 MD79


Andoversford, Gloucestershire: Whittington Press


Born in Ireland, Robert Gibbings grew up in a strict but loving home. He had three siblings and his father, Edward, was a Reverend in the Protestant Church. It was in Kinsale, a fishing port on the southeast coast of Ireland, that Gibbings first began to draw as a young boy and develop his love of nature, something he shared with his mother, Caroline. Gibbings grew into a tall, handsome and well-built man and despite his long-held ambition to become an artist, his father insisted he attend medical school. It did not work out and Gibbings left in his third year. From 1911 until 1913, Gibbings studied in London at the Slade and the Central School of Art. It was at this time that he came under the influence of Noel Rooke, described as the ‘pioneer of modern wood-engraving in England’. Rooke was another founder of the Society of Wood Engravers.


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