The news of the death of Muriel Rose this January will sadden many senior members of the RBA. Muriel lived nearly all her life in Richmond and East Sheen, studying painting at Richmond School of Art and pottery at Hammersmith College of Art. Later she lectured on these subjects at Richmond College of Adult Education. Not only was Muriel a dear friend for over 30 years, she could well have been instrumental in my metamorphosis from ARBA to RBA, leaving her sick bed in order to vote for me.
A painter of landscapes, earlier favouring Yugoslavian and Continental vistas, she also painted still lifes and quirky genre scenes, imbuing them with joyful colours. These colours extended to her regular appearances at private views of the RBA and ROI of which she was also a member, and sometimes the Royal Academy where she would stand out wearing her favourite blue and maroon patterned jacket. Muriel had a number of exhibitions most notable being at the Canaletto gallery in London and Leighton House. She was a member of the Campden Hill Club and Fulham Artists.
Once whilst having tea at her ‘Aladdin’s Cave’ home, I much admired a certain patchwork cushion of such originality in its design and materials it could only have been a creation of Muriel’s. She insisted on giving it to me.
Some years ago, whilst browsing at the annual Bedford Park Summer Exhibition, Peter Blake RA spotted one of Muriel’s witty and modestly priced works and later happily came away with it tucked under his arm. Muriel Rose will be remembered for her loyalty, her kindness and her ‘get up and go’ spirit. Alas now she has gone...