Posted: 8 November, 2018

125th Anniversary Alumnae Portrait Exhibition

Alumnae, Alumnae Events, Arts, Careers, Guests, Headline, News, Past Events, Senior School

In celebration of the school’s 125th Anniversary, Putney has commissioned a series of portraits, of 12 trail-blazing alumnae, who attended the school over the generations and have gone on to make their mark in the world.

The exhibition is a legacy to the generations of Putney pupils to come, inspiring them to go on to achieve their goals in whatever field they choose to pursue.

The series of images, by photographer Anita Corbin, herself a Putney Alumna, and the artist behind the critically acclaimed Visible Girls and First Women UK exhibitions, acknowledges the achievements of a range of exceptional alumnae who all display the same indomitable Putney spirit that is so present in today’s generation of Putney pupils.

Commenting on her subjects, Anita Corbin said, “All these women, and the many that aren’t featured here, have a great deal in common. They have all gone on to find their own distinct pathways. The teachers at Putney treated us as independent young women and encouraged us to see beyond the stereotypes – we were taught that anything and everything was within our grasp.”

Sophie Raworth, Journalist and Broadcaster
Sophie Raworth, Journalist and Broadcaster
Madeleine Wickham. Author, Sophie Kinsella (pen name)
Madeleine Wickham. Author, Sophie Kinsella (pen name)
Aicha McKenzie. Director of AMCK and Choreographer
Aicha McKenzie. Director of AMCK and Choreographer
Pippa Greenwood. Botanist, TV and Radio Broadcaster and Writer
Pippa Greenwood. Botanist, TV and Radio Broadcaster and Writer
Sophy Gardner. Former RAF Wing Commander
Sophy Gardner. Former RAF Wing Commander
Jenny Beavan OBE. Oscar-winning Costume Designer
Jenny Beavan OBE. Oscar-winning Costume Designer
Sophie Simnett. Actor
Sophie Simnett. Actor
Baroness Virginia Bottomley of Nettlestone. Chancellor, University of Hull; Trustee, The Economist & Life Peer Formerly Secretary of State for Health and for National Heritage
Baroness Virginia Bottomley of Nettlestone. Chancellor, University of Hull; Trustee, The Economist & Life Peer Formerly Secretary of State for Health and for National Heritage
Mary Coombs. Computer Programmer
Mary Coombs. Computer Programmer
Ailsa Bosworth MBE. Founder and CEO of the National Rheumatoid Arthritis Society
Ailsa Bosworth MBE. Founder and CEO of the National Rheumatoid Arthritis Society
Dr Sandie Okoro. Lawyer and Senior Vice President at the World Bank Group
Dr Sandie Okoro. Lawyer and Senior Vice President at the World Bank Group
Anita Corbin. Photographer by Antonia Cheema-Grubb Year 13
Anita Corbin. Photographer by Antonia Cheema-Grubb Year 13

The exhibition was unveiled on 8 November as part of the celebrations marking the 125th Anniversary of the school which first opened its doors in 1893.

The 12 subjects are:

Sophy Gardner. Former RAF Wing Commander

Sophie Simnett. Actor

Mary Coombs. Computer Programmer

Baroness Virginia Bottomley of Nettlestone. Chancellor, University of Hull; Trustee, The Economist & Life Peer

Formerly Secretary of State for Health and for National Heritage

Aicha McKenzie. Director of AMCK and Choreographer

Dr Sandie Okoro. Lawyer and Senior Vice President at the World Bank Group

Jenny Beavan OBE. Oscar-winning Costume Designer

Sophie Raworth. Journalist and Broadcaster

Madeleine Wickham. Author, (pen name) Sophie Kinsella

Pippa Greenwood. Botanist, TV and Radio Broadcaster and Writer

Ailsa Bosworth MBE. Founder and CEO of the National Rheumatoid Arthritis Society

Anita Corbin. Photographer

About Anita Corbin

Anita began her photography work in the early ’80s with her now internationally acclaimed Visible Girls series. A graduate of the Royal College of Art and finalist in the Sunday Times/Nikon scholarship of 1981, she then spent 15 years covering “human interest” stories for the The Sunday Times and The Observer magazines.  Commissions for a wide range of publications followed, including: Time Out, the RA magazine, Design, ELLE and New Society. Her portfolio also includes portraiture and annual report photography for award-winning design consultancies and public sector documentary work for housing charities, health trusts and the British Council.

Her editorial portraiture includes iconic shots of Bob Hoskins, Joely Richardson, Peter O’Toole, Alan Bennett, Bono and Mica Paris.

The National Portrait Gallery in London has, to date, purchased 20 of her photographs for the national archive.

Anita Corbin Award

The award was conceived to offer invaluable experience to a Year 12 student with a passion for art or who would like to go on to study art at higher education.

The experience consisted of shadowing Anita and her team at her showroom and studio in Somerset to experience the life of a photographer. The winner, Antonia Cheema-Grubb was immersed in researching subjects, location finding, shooting and the curation and post production that follow.

Antonia joined Anita to assist at the portrait shoot, with among others, Sandie Okoro at the World Bank, and was invited to take the twelfth portrait of the series, of Anita Corbin herself.

Watch our alumnae videos recalling memories of school

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