William Charles Penn was a painter and influential teacher at Liverpool School of Art from 1911 until after World War II. Born in London, he studied at the Lambeth and City and Guilds Schools of Art from 1895, subsequently winning a scholarship to the Royal Academy from 1900-1905.
Penn subsequently studied at the Académie Julian in Paris in 1908 and the following year in the Netherlands and Belgium. As well as being a member of Sandon Studios Society and Liverpool Academy, he belonged to the Royal Institute of Oil Painters from 1908 and the Royal Society of Portrait Painters from 1952, as well as the Royal Cambrian Academy. He showed 38 works at the Royal Academy, with numerous others at the Royal Glasgow Institute of the Fine Arts, and for many years at the Liverpool Autumn Exhibitions.
Serving with the 57th Division in France in the First World War, he was awarded the Military Cross in 1918. In latter years, Penn moved from Liverpool northwards with his family, to Brampton, Cumbria, where he lived until his death in 1968
In excess of 50 of Penn’s paintings are held within national public collections of British art, including The Walker Art Gallery in Liverpool, University College London, Williamson Art Gallery and the University of Liverpool.