Charles William Skipwith NAPER

Charles William Skipwith NAPER

Born on 28 October 1882 in Exeter, his father was William Naper, a Lieutenant-Colonel, and his mother Jane Wyatt Naper (nee Edgell). His education was at Haileybury College in 1898 and the Royal Academy Schools from 1900-1907.

He married Ella Louise Champion [See Ella Louise NAPER ] in 1910, and they moved first to Looe and then to Trewoofe in Lamorna, where they were to live for the rest of their lives. The initial challenge was to buy three fields from Colonel Paynter, the local landowner, and for this purchase they were able to borrow from Charles' family.

Naper designed the house himself to include a large studio for himself, a workshop for Ella, and extensive gardens which they created together. Just below their house was Oakhill Cottage, where Laura and Harold Knight became their near neighbours and closest friends. Other friends were the BIRCH family, the HEATHS and the HUGHES.

During the 1920s Charles was a regular exhibitor on Show Days and at the Newlyn Art Gallery. But in later life he became disillusioned with his painting. Reclusive and uncommunicative, he was increasingly dependent on Ella. They were both devoted to each other, and Ella's greater success did not cause friction between them. During repairs to his studio, he deliberately destroyed almost all of his studio paintings, and some he had by other artists (MUNNINGS, Laura KNIGHT).A few later paintings survived with the family, and they depict the awesome cliffs of West Cornwall.


Landscape painter and architect

works and access

Likenesses of the Artist: portrait by Laura Knight (Spring 1916)

Works include: Bodmin Moor (1925)

Archival Deposits: Papers and letters are with the family.


RA (5); NAG September 1920 Revival Exhibition, Spring 1925 (enamel and copper), Spring 1926, March 1927


The Cornishman 24 & 31 Mar 1926, Western Morning News Mar 1927 (See Hardie 1995)

St Ives Times 3 Sep 1920 [from WMN]

Branfield (2003) Ella and Charles Naper, Art and Life at Lamorna (illus)

Hardie (1995) 100 Years/Diary; (2009) Artists in Newlyn & West Cornwall (Col pl: Toward Land's End);

Holmes Artistic Tradition

Johnson & Greutzner

Newton et al Painting at the Edge

Tovey, David (2022) Lamorna - An Artistic, Social and Literary History - Volumes I & II, Wilson Books

Wormleighton A Painter Laureate