Elizabeth Forbes (1859-1912) was born in Canada, and was one of the leading women artists of her day and an important member of the art colony in Newlyn. Her marriage in 1889 to Stanhope Forbes was a partnership of equals, and their School of Painting at Anchor Studio was very much a joint enterprise
Forbes was friends with the artists James Whistler and Walter Sickert, both of whom influenced her work, and her etchings in particular are said to show the influence of Whistler. After studying at the South Kensington Art School, she also travelled to New York, Munich, Brittany, and finally Newlyn in search of inspiration.
Elizabeth Forbes worked in oil, watercolour and pastels as well as making etchings, and her subject matter included children, landscapes and fishing scenes. She was a vibrant contributor to the art colony, exhibiting and selling more work than most of her male contemporaries. Sadly, she died of cancer in 1912, aged only 52 and her obituary mourned the loss of the ‘Queen of Newlyn’.