Born in Edmonton, Alberta, Canada in 1958, Robert Monroe Edwards has been a teacher and portrait artist for over forty years. He holds both a PhD and an MPhil in art history and the history of ideas from the University of Cambridge (King’s College) in England, an MSc and MA from the London Business School and London’s Central School of Art and Design respectively, and a BFA from the University of Alberta, Canada.
Dr Edwards has held solo exhibitions on both sides of the Atlantic, and his portrait subjects have included international politicians, religious figures, business personalities and assorted arts, sports, and entertainment celebrities. He admires - and has been influenced by - the master drawings of the Italian Renaissance; the portraiture of Rembrandt, Rubens, Hals, Van Dyck, Velasquez, Watteau, Ingres, Repin, and Sargent; and the caricature portraits of Daumier, Low, Levine, and Peterson.
Dr Edwards is a former Graphics Editor of Reuters in London; a former Director of the British Cartoon Archive at the University of Kent at Canterbury, England, and an artist of various publications by Simon and Schuster, Dow Jones Irwin, and Reuters. He has worked as a design consultant in both London and New York for the World Health Organization, the British Medical Journal, and a number of corporate identity, graphic design, and annual report firms. Since then, he has been published as both a portrait and caricature artist in over 150 international magazines, journals, and newspapers, including The Financial Times, International Herald Tribune, Wall Street Journal, Reuters Magazine, Barron’s, New York Post, New York Newsday, Crain’s New York Business, Business Week, Daily Telegraph of London, Le Monde, South East Asia Economic Review, and The Toronto Globe and Mail.
He was the first recipient of the Canada Council for the Arts J.B.C. Watkins Prize, and a Ciba Geigy Canada Illustration Prize winner. He is a patron of the Portrait Society of America, and among his many portraits over the years he has created two drawings for both Queen Elizabeth II and her son Charles, Prince of Wales, that marked the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee in 2012.
Dr Edwards was once trained as a classical pianist, and was fortunate enough to have been an Institutional Sales Manager for Steinway & Sons in New York City, working under Henry and John Steinway inside the original Steinway Hall on West 57th Street.
Dr Edwards resides with his family in Western Pennsylvania, where he teaches private atelier art classes in a studio built by Amish craftsman.