Mary-Clare Cornwallis is the daughter of the late Lord Cornwallis. The family has been pre-eminent in English history through their connections with the royal family, claiming descent from Richard Earl of Cornwall and Edward 2nd, and through their service in the royal household and offices of state.
From an American point of view, Thomas Cornwallis was one of the first settlers in Maryland and credited with winning the first sea battle against rival colonists from Delaware in 1635. The first Marquis, Charles Cornwallis, had the greatest impact on American history with his surrender at Yorktown in 1781. While he fought on land his younger brother Admiral William Cornwallis patrolled the North American coast against the French and is now credited with playing a vital role in the defeat of the Spanish/French fleets at Trafalgar in 1805. Their uncle Edward Cornwallis, another general, and twin brother of the Archbishop of Canterbury, was the founder of Nova Scotia in 1748.
Having grown up in the “Garden of England,” Mary-Clare developed a love of nature at an early age; a passion which has stayed with her to form the major influence in her artwork. Recently, she has moved from strict botanical accuracy to a more free style which captures the attention, and stirs the imagination. Her paintings are vibrant and sensual and constructed of layer upon layer of pure watercolour. She especially loves working on a large scale, enjoying the fact that there is little room for error and the challenge that provides.
Mary-Clare has been greatly influenced by the work and teachings of Rosie Sanders and Evelyn Binns, both leading botanical painters in the UK with international reputations.
Mary-Clare’s work can be found in galleries and private collections in the UK and abroad. She has exhibited in Great Britain, Scotland, Brisbane and Washington, D.C.
Flying Colours Gallery, London – Chelsea Flower Show
Somerset House, London
The Smithfield Gallery, London – Caledoniart
Ottersburn Gallery, Dumfries, Scotland
Cork Street Gallery, London
Whitehouse Gallery, Kirkcudbright, Scotland
Oriel Gallery, Brisbane, Australia
Caledonian Club, London