Born 1882 (Circa)
Died 1960 (Presumed)
Active: 1909 - 1949
Country of birth and death: England
Ethel was the sister (or cousin) of Sybil Pye (1879-1958), bookbinder and a relative of David Pye (1914-93) wood carver and writer. Ethel and Sybil may have been the daughters of George William Pye, bookbinder (born c.1848 in Essex) and sisters to Walter Pye, also a book binder (born c.1874). If so, then Ethel's first profession was as a teacher.
Ethel and Sybil belonged to a literary circle that included Rupert Brooke and Virginia Woolf (they are mentioned several times in Brook's letters and other papers, and Virginia Woolf's diary for 1920-24 records a meeting with Ethel).
Pye's career as an artist is poorly documented. However in 1932 she showed 'Sleepwalker', wood carving, in the Women's International Art Club exhibition at the Art Club, Suffolk Street (other sculptors included Winifred Leveritt and Dora Clarke). Then in 1949 she exhibited carvings at the Kensington Art Gallery from 31st March to 26th April with watercolours and temperas by Henry Winslow and H. Stirling Winslow (catalogue in the National Art Library).
Sybil and Ethel were evidently generous in their support of younger artists because the sculptor Freda Skinner, said she received financial support from the sisters (and also Arthur Rackham and Louis Fry) which enabled her to train as an artist.
Dates are usually the year a work was exhibited so may differ from date of production.
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Exhibitions, Meetings, Awards and other Events
Exhibited at Exhibition of Fair Women (International Society of Sculptors, Painters and Gravers, London), 1909
Exhibited at Ninth Exhibition of the International Society of Sculptors, Painters and Gravers (London), 1909
'Thetis and the Body of Achilles'
Census Returns of England and Wales, 1911
RG14PN9690 RG78PN514A RD188 SD10 ED16 SN353 (possible source)
mentioned in: Obituary: Freda Skinner, Sheila Mitchell; Friday, 30 July 1993; http://www.independent.co.uk/news/people/obituary-freda-skinner-1488051.html (accessed 11 April 2010)
The Times Digital Archive 1785-1985
The Times, Tuesday, Feb 23, 1932; pg. 12; Issue 46064; col C Art Exhibitions Mr. Epstein And The Old Testament Category: Reviews
Citing this record
'Ethel Pye', Mapping the Practice and Profession of Sculpture in Britain and Ireland 1851-1951, University of Glasgow History of Art and HATII, online database 2011 [http://sculpture.gla.ac.uk/view/person.php?id=msib2_1204137762, accessed 30 Jan 2015]