2022 and Ruth Prowse

As we look forward to the start of the academic year, it is inspiring to see our namesake, the late Ruth Prowse, as a student at RCA. The image dates from 1906 and taken from the collection of Brendalyn Stempel.

"Ruth Prowse, born in 1883, in Queenstown, Eastern Cape, started painting in 1897 at the age of 14 before beginning her training as a painter at the Cape Town School of Art in 1900. She continued her art training at the SLADE School of Art in London, 1902, The Royal Academy , 1903 -6, and in Paris in 1907, before returning to Cape Town in 1908 to begin teaching.

Ruth Prowse would grow to become a highly respected figure in art and culture, as well as contributing to its preservation as Keeper of the Michaelis Collection, the Trustee of the (IZIKO) South African National Gallery, as member of the South African Society of the Arts, as well as having a keen interest in the preservation of historical buildings.

But the story of Ruth Prowse is not over. In 1967, upon her death, she bequeathed her home, known as “The Retreat” on the Roodebloem Estate for use as an art school." - Lynette Bester