by Scholes, Robert
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Geroge Owen Wynne Apperley (1884 - 1960)
He was born in Ventnor on the Isle of Wight and died in Tangier. His early childhood was spent in Seaside towns on the South coast of England and in Alton, Hampshire. It was here when George was six that his father died in a hunting accident, leading his mother to take him to Torquay where they then settled. His mother later remarried. It was not felt fitting that an Apperley should become simply a painter — indeed George's stepfather was keen for him to maintain the family tradition and join the military while his mother harboured a desire for him to join the Church. Apperley's interest in art however was obsessive and he was sent, in consequence, to school at Sandhurst and later to Uppingham — both renowned for their disciplinarianism. Here he showed little interest in academic subjects other than art and later persuaded his family that a tutor would be more beneficial to him.
In 1903 he enrolled at Herkomer's but his rebellious streak and his somewhat Bohemian lifestyle led to his expulsion the following year — the teachers at the school were not impressed by his work. He returned to home tutorials, and, in 1904, with his tutor, Major Wilkinson, he visited Italy. It was on this tour that his serious art education began. When he returned he began to paint seriously and to show and sell his work. In 1907 he married Miss Hilda Pope, a union not deemed to be fitting by her parents, and the couple honeymooned in Lugano. On their return they established their home in West Hampstead, London, for the first time affording Apperley a stable base from which to develop his painting techniques and to exhibit more frequently. He had exhibitions of his work at the Baillie Gallery London (1906), Leicester Galleries in 1908 and 1910, and his work was noticed favorably by Huntly Carter in a New Age report on the Leicester Gallery show.
An MJP site-user has contributed the following information: “G. O. Wynne Apperley continues to be a popular and collected artist in Spain. Two of his sons are still alive and well, and a grandson runs a website that supplies 'giclee' reproductions of his work http://www.apperley-art.com/index.html. He was never really a modernist, but became a technically superb watercolourist who earnt a living from portraits and townscapes. There is an article in The Studio (circa 1920) about his work. He is represented in the museum (currently siteless) at Bushey, Hertfordshire: Curator, Nick Brown.”