The Gallery holds the most extensive collection of portraits in the world. Search over 215,000 works, 150,000 of which are illustrated from the 16th Century to the present day.

Advanced Collection search

Search the Collection

Laura Knight

(1877-1970), Artist

Dame Laura Knight

Sitter in 34 portraits
Artist associated with 3 portraits
Knight studied at Nottingham School of Art in 1900, and there met Harold Knight. After marrying in 1903, they joined an artists' colony at Staithes, Yorkshire, before moving in 1908 to Newlyn, Cornwall. In 1929 she was created Dame of the British Empire, and in 1936 became the first woman elected to full membership of the Royal Academy. Her subjects included Gypsies, dancers and circus performers. During the war, her popularity and distinguished career made her an obvious choice for the War Artists Advisory Committee, who tasked British artists with recording the war. In 1945 she asked to record the trial of Nazi war criminals in Nuremberg. Her 1965 retrospective at the RA was the first accorded to a woman.

More on Knight: Laura Knight Portraits book in our Shops | A Life in Portraits

Tell us More

2 Likes voting
is closed

Thanks for Liking

Please Like other favourites!
If they inspire you please support our work.

Make a donation Close

List Thumbnail

Laura Knight, by Keystone Press Agency Ltd - NPG x137366

Laura Knight

by Keystone Press Agency Ltd
vintage print, 14 October 1963
NPG x137366

Laura Knight, by Walter Bird - NPG x168789

Laura Knight

by Walter Bird
bromide print, 16 October 1964
NPG x168789

Laura Knight, by Walter Bird - NPG x183900

Laura Knight

by Walter Bird
vintage print, 1964
NPG x183900

Laura Knight, by Madame Yevonde - NPG x26356

Laura Knight

by Madame Yevonde
bromide print on velvet card mount, 1967
NPG x26356

Laura Knight, by Madame Yevonde - NPG x26358

Laura Knight

by Madame Yevonde
bromide print on velvet card mount, 1967
NPG x26358

Laura Knight, by Madame Yevonde - NPG x26357

Laura Knight

by Madame Yevonde
bromide print on velvet card mount, 1967
NPG x26357

Laura Knight, by J.S. Lewinski - NPG x13730

Laura Knight

by J.S. Lewinski
bromide print on card mount, 1967
NPG x13730

Laura Knight, by Nicolo Vogel - NPG x19167

Laura Knight

by Nicolo Vogel
bromide print
NPG x19167

Laura Knight, by Nicolo Vogel - NPG x19168

Laura Knight

by Nicolo Vogel
bromide print
NPG x19168

Laura Knight, by Fred Roe - NPG D43191

Laura Knight

by Fred Roe
pencil, 1929
NPG D43191

Dame Laura Knight, by Unknown photographer, issued by  Carreras Tobacco Company - NPG D49306

Dame Laura Knight

by Unknown photographer, issued by Carreras Tobacco Company
colour relief halftone cigarette card, 1935
NPG D49306

Web image not currently available

Laura Knight

by Walter Bird
vintage print, 1964
NPG x183963

Related People


Tell us more back to top

Can you tell us more about this person? Spotted an error, information that is missing (a sitter’s life dates, occupation or family relationships, or a date of portrait for example) or do you know anything that we don't know? If you have information to share please complete the form below.

If you require information from us, please use our Archive enquiry service. You can buy a print of most illustrated portraits. Select the portrait of interest to you, then look out for a Buy a Print button. Prices start at £6 for unframed prints, £25 for framed prints. If you wish to license an image, please use our Rights and Images service.

Please note that we cannot provide valuations.

We digitise over 8,000 portraits a year and we cannot guarantee being able to digitise images that are not already scheduled.

Tony Copsey

01 May 2018, 15:37

As Laura Johnson, she was born at Long Eaton, Derbyshire on 4 August 1877, the youngest of the three daughters of Charles William Johnson and his wife Charlotte nee Bates (1853-1893), who married at Nottingham in 1872. In 1881, 3 year old Laura was living at 9 Noel Street, Radford, Nottingham, with her 28 year old mother Charlotte, an art teacher, and siblings Elizabeth E. 7, born Nottingham and Evangeline Agnes 5, born Greasley, Nottinghamshire; 9 Noel Street was the home of 67 year old widow Charlotte Bates, the mother of Charlotte Johnson, who was a lace maker, employing 22 people. Charlotte Johnson taught part-time at the Nottingham School of Art, and managed to have 13 year old Laura enrolled as a non-fee paying 'artisan student'. In 1891, Charlotte was a 38 year old widowed art teacher, living at Birkin Avenue, Radford, Nottingham with her 15 year old daughter Evangeline Agnes, a pupil teacher at a Board School. At the age of fifteen, and still a student, Laura Johnson took over her mother's teaching duties when Charlotte became seriously ill. At the School of Art, Laura met another promising students, 17 year old Harold Knight....

What can you tell us?close

There are occasions when we are unsure of the identity of a sitter or artist, their life dates, occupation or have not recorded their family relationships. Sometimes we have not recorded the date of a portrait. Do you have specialist knowledge or a particular interest about any aspect of the portrait or sitter or artist that you can share with us? We would welcome any information that adds to and enhances our information and understanding about a particular portrait, sitter or artist.


How do you know this? Please could you let us know your source of information.

* Permission to publish (Privacy information)
Privacy Informationclose

The National Portrait Gallery will NOT use your information to contact you or store for any other purpose than to investigate or display your contribution. By ticking permission to publish you are indicating your agreement for your contribution to be shown on this collection item page. Please note your email address will not be displayed on the page nor will it be used for any marketing material or promotion of any kind.

Please ensure your comments are relevant and appropriate. Your contributions must be polite and with no intention of causing trouble. All contributions are moderated.

Your Emailclose

Contributions are moderated. We'll need your email address so that we can follow up on the information provided and contact you to let you know when your contribution has been published.