Roy Nockolds

Return to Previous Page
Self-taught aviation and motor racing artist and etcher born in London. Nockolds was attracted to motor sport on his first visit to Brooklands in 1924. He contributed to Motor Sport, Autocar and Motor, and excelled in capturing the atmosphere and technical aspects of motor racing. He applied the same skill to aviation art - his authoritative picture of the Battle of Britain, commissioned for Royal Air Force Fighter Command, is a tour de force. During World War II Nockolds served in the Air Force, developed a revolutionary camouflage for the Mosquitoes and was an Official War Artist. Immediately after the war he produced a remarkable series of near-abstract paintings for Armstrong Siddeley celebrating the effects of the new generation of jet engines. He was a chairman of the Guild of Aviation Artists, 1975, and of The Brooklands Society, 1976. Nockolds oeuvre was diverse; he produced excellent drypoints, published by Autocar; a series of abstracts of science and technology for Mullard; sporting prints for Frost & Reed; and commissioned portraits of gun dogs. He showed at RA, RP, Guildhall Art Gallery and elsewhere, and there was a memorial exhibition at Qantas Gallery In 1980. He lived near Farnham, Surrey.

Although best known as a motoring artist and illustrator, he was in fact a highly versatile painter, who worked on landscapes, portraits and, bizarrely, studies of dogs. During the Second World War Nockolds served in the Royal Air Force, becoming an official war artist commissioned to do work for the Ministry of Information.

Nockolds exhibited widely, including at the RA in 1949, at the Royal Society of Portrait Painters, and the Royal Society of Marine Artists (RSMA), and held a solo exhibition at the Kensington Art Gallery in 1953, also an exhibition of Dog Paintings at the Trafford Gallery. He showed at the Exhibition of British Achievements in New York in 1960, and became Chairman of the Guild of Aviation artists in 1975. Roy Nockolds died in April 1979, and a Memorial Exhibition of his work was held at the Quantas Gallery, Piccadilly, London, in November 1980.