Fay Godwin



Born Berlin, Germany, father a British diplomat, mother an American artist. Educated at various schools all over the world.

Moved to London.

Became interested in photography through photographing her young children

Publication of first co-authored book, The Oldest Road, with writer J.R.L. Anderson. Exhibitions from the series toured nationally.

Recipient of major award from Arts Council of Great Britain to continue landscape work in British Isles, much of which is included in Land.

Start of British Councils overseas tour of Landscape Photographs.

Publication of Land. Major exhibition of Land at the Serpentine Gallery, London.

1986 South Bank Show- the first full-length documentary to feature a photographer.

Fellow at the National Museum of Photography, Film & Television, Bradford.

President of the Ramblers' Association, UK. Then life vice president.

Awarded Honorary Fellowship of the Royal Photographic Society.
Six week lecture and workshop tour of New Zealand.

Awarded Honorary Fellowship by the Royal Incorporation of Architects in Scotland.

Award from Northern Arts for the Year of the Visual Arts, and from the Erna and Victor Hasselblad Foundation to work on the contribution of small farmers to the character of the Cumbrian landscape.

Major retrospective at the Barbican Centre, with accompanying publication,

Honorary Doctotorate of Arts at De Montfort University.

Died, May 2005 aged 74.

Selected Solo Exhibitions

Writers' portraits/Young Music Makers, Swiss Cottage Library, London

The Oldest Road, An Exploration of the Ridgeway, Anthony Stokes Gallery, London, and simultaneously at the Photographic Gallery, University of Southampton; subsequent tours of the UK, also by the Photographers Gallery, London.

The Drovers' Roads of Wales, Anthony Stokes Gallery, London, and simultaneously at the Oriel Bookshop, Welsh Arts Council, Cardiff, and toured by the Photographers Gallery, London.
The Oil Rush, Aberdeen Art Gallery, also shown at The National Theatre, London, and toured Scotland, as well as to Denmark and Norway).

The Drovers' Roads of Wales and The Ridgeway, Chester Arts Centre

The Calder Valley (from Remains of Elmet), Anthony Stokes Gallery, London, and simultaneously at Impressions Gallery, York, and national tour.
Selected Landscapes and Portraits, Yuen Lui Gallery, Seattle.

Selected Landscapes, Aarhus Photographic Museum, Denmark
East Neuk,Crawford Arts Centre, St Andrews

Romney Marsh, Anthony Stokes Gallery, London, and simultaneously at Rye Art Gallery, Sussex, toured nationally by Photogallery, St Leonards-on-Sea, Sussex.

The Saxon Shore Way, Photogallery, St Leonards-on -Sea, Sussex, with subsequent national tour.
The Whisky Roads of Scotland, Crawford Arts Centre, St Andrews, subsequent tour.
Portraits of Writers, Midland Arts Centre, Birmingham.

Landscape Photographs, a British Council exhibition, starts international tour

Land,Serpentine Gallery, London,then national tour in UK.

Land,Yale Centre for British Art, USA
Literary portraits, The Poetry Society, London; Kettles Yard, Cambridge; Birmingham and Ilkley Literary Festivals, and at The Photographers Gallery.

Bradford in Colour, The National Museum of Photography, Film & Television in Bradford.
Land,Stanford Museum of Art, USA

Our forbidden land, The Royal Photographic Society, Bath, 1990, with subsequent national tour

Glassworks & Secret Lives, Mead Gallery, Warwick Arts Centre, and subsequent national tour.

A Perfect Republic of Shepherds, at The Wordsworth Trust, Grasmere.

The Saxon Shore Way, Whitstable Museum

Alchemy, new colour work at Penny School Gallery, Kingston, London.
Landmarks, major retrospective exhibition at the Barbican Centre, London, from 26 July - 30 September 2001 and subsequent tour

Colourworks, Battle, East Sussex.

Synergy, Kingston College of Art & Design, London.

Selected Group Exhibitions:

The Land: 20th Century Landscape Photography, selected by Bill Brandt, Victoria and Albert Museum, London

Wales, Mostyn Art Gallery, Llandudno, Wales

The Arts Council Collection 1942- 1978, Hayward Gallery, London
Fairies, Brighton Arts Gallery and Museum, Sussex

Presences of Nature: Words and Images of the Lake District, Carlisle Museum, subsequent national tour

National Gallery of Modern Art, Edinburgh

Callanish, An Lanntair, Stornoway, 1995 and subsequent tour.
Fleeting Arcadias, Landscape photography from the Arts Council Collection, touring exhibition 2000 on


The Oldest Road: An Exploration of the Ridgeway (with J.R.L. Anderson) 1975.
The Oil Rush (with Mervyn Jones) 1976.
The Drovers Roads of Wales (with Shirley Toulson) 1977.
Islands (with John Fowles) 1978.
Remains of Elmet: A Pennine Sequence (with Ted Hughes) 1979.
Romney Marsh and the Royal Military Canal (with Richard Ingrams) 1980.
Tess: The Story of a Guide Dog (with Peter Purves) 1981.
The Whisky Roads of Scotland (with Derek Cooper) 1982.
Bison at Chalk Farm 1982.
The Saxon Shore Way from Gravesend to Rye (with Alan Sillitoe) 1983.
The National Trust Book of Wessex (with text by Patricia Beer) 1985.
Land (with essay by John Fowles, and introduction by Ian Jeffrey) 1985, selected for best of British book design and production award, 1985.
The Secret Forest of Dean (with introduction by Edna Healey) 1986.
Our forbidden land, which won the first Green Book of the Year Award, from Books for a Change, 1990.
Elmet, completely new edition of book with Poet Laureate Ted Hughes, originally published as Remains of Elmet in 1979, with new poems and new pictures, selected for best of British book design and production award, 1994.
The Edge of the Land 1995.
Glassworks & Secret Lives, (with essay by Ian Jeffrey) 1999.
Landmarks, with essay by Roger Taylor and introduction by Simon Armitage, 2001

Selected Collections:

Aberdeen Art Gallery, Scotland
Aberystwyth University
Arts Council of Great Britain
Bibliothèque Nationale, Paris
British Council, London
The British Library, London
Creasey Collection of Contemporay Art, Salisbury
Department of the Environment, London
Mappin Art Gallery, Sheffield
National Gallery of Modern Art, Edinburgh
Scottish National Portrait Gallery, Edinburgh
National Portrait Gallery, London
National Museum of Photography, Film & Television in Bradford
Piece Museum, Halifax
Royal Library, Copenhagen
Stanford Museum of Art, USA
Victoria and Albert Museum
and in many other public and private collections worldwide

Fay Godwin

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