is a photographer, born in Chemnitz
Chemnitz is the third-largest city of the Free State of Saxony, Germany. Chemnitz is an independent city which is not part of any county and seat of the government region Direktionsbezirk Chemnitz. Located in the northern foothills of the Ore Mountains, it is a part of the Saxon triangle...
Germany , officially the Federal Republic of Germany , is a federal parliamentary republic in Europe. The country consists of 16 states while the capital and largest city is Berlin. Germany covers an area of 357,021 km2 and has a largely temperate seasonal climate...
in 1959 and moving to Britain in 1984 after graduating from University of Leipzig
The University of Leipzig , located in Leipzig in the Free State of Saxony, Germany, is one of the oldest universities in the world and the second-oldest university in Germany...
Her Sculptors project documented sculptors in their working environment and includes portraits of Elisabeth Frink
Dame Elisabeth Jean Frink, DBE, CH, RA was an English sculptor and printmaker...
, Kenneth Armitage
William Kenneth Armitage CBE was a British sculptor known for his semiabstract bronzes.-Biography:...
, Andy Goldsworthy
Andy Goldsworthy, OBE is a British sculptor, photographer and environmentalist producing site-specific sculpture and land art situated in natural and urban settings. He lives and works in Scotland.-Life and career:The son of F...
, Sir Anthony Caro and Lynn Chadwick
Lynn Russell Chadwick CBE was an English artist and sculptor trained as an architectural draughtsman,but began producing metal mobile sculpture during the 1940s. Chadwick was born in London and went to Merchant Taylor's School.Chadwick was commissioned to produce 3 works for the 1951 Festival of...
A collection of her portraits of British scientists is held by the Royal Society and was shown in part in a display at the National Portrait Gallery, including portraits of Sir Alec Jeffreys, Lord Darzi, Sir Martin Evans
Sir Martin John Evans FRS is a British scientist who, with Matthew Kaufman, was the first to culture mice embryonic stem cells and cultivate them in a laboratory in 1981...
, Sir Tim Hunt
Sir Richard Timothy "Tim" Hunt, FRS is an English biochemist.Hunt was awarded the 2001 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine with Paul Nurse and Leland H...
and Dame Louise Johnson
Dame Professor Louise Napier Johnson, DBE, FRS, is a retired British biochemist. She was David Phillips Professor of Molecular Biophysics at the University of Oxford from 1990 to 2007, and is now an emeritus professor....
Between 2008 and 2011 she compiled a photographic record of the restoration of the Watts Gallery
Watts Gallery is an art gallery in the village of Compton, near Guildford in Surrey. It is dedicated to the work of Victorian era painter and sculptor George Frederic Watts....
in Compton, Surrey; England's only gallery devoted to the work of a single artist. It houses sculpture and paintings by the Victorian George Frederic Watts
George Frederic Watts, OM was a popular English Victorian painter and sculptor associated with the Symbolist movement. Watts became famous in his lifetime for his allegorical works, such as Hope and Love and Life...
Her early work includes a large number of photographs of her childhood and youth in the GDR (East Germany).
She works primarily in black-and-white, using available light and Hasselblad.
Works in public collection
There are over 90 photographic portraits by Purkiss in the National Portrait Gallery collection including portraits of Dennis Thatcher, Enoch Powell
John Enoch Powell, MBE was a British politician, classical scholar, poet, writer, and soldier. He served as a Conservative Party MP and Minister of Health . He attained most prominence in 1968, when he made the controversial Rivers of Blood speech in opposition to mass immigration from...
, Simon Rattle
Sir Simon Denis Rattle, CBE is an English conductor. He rose to international prominence as conductor of the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra and since 2002 has been principal conductor of the Berlin Philharmonic ....
and Georg Solti
Sir Georg Solti, KBE, was a Hungarian-British orchestral and operatic conductor. He was a major classical recording artist, holding the record for having received the most Grammy Awards, having personally won 31 as a conductor, including the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award. In addition to his...
. Further images are in the collections of the Library of the Royal Academy of Arts, Royal Society
The Royal Society of London for Improving Natural Knowledge, known simply as the Royal Society, is a learned society for science, and is possibly the oldest such society in existence. Founded in November 1660, it was granted a Royal Charter by King Charles II as the "Royal Society of London"...
in London, the Henry Moore Institute in Leeds, and the Arts Council
An arts council is a government or private, non-profit organization dedicated to promoting the arts mainly by funding local artists, awarding prizes, and organizing events at home and abroad...
(2001) Orleans House Gallery (with introductions by Bamber Gascoigne
Bamber Gascoigne, FRSL is a British television presenter and author, most known for being the original quizmaster on University Challenge.-Biography:...
and Terence Pepper) ISBN 1-902643-03-8
(2007) Orleans House Gallery ISBN 978-1-4276-2471-0 (with an introduction by Victoria Worsley, Henry Moore Institute)
Images of the GDR
akg-images (Berlin-London-Paris) (2009) ISBN 978-1-4276-4085-7
Illustrations to publications
Oxford Dictionary of National Biography, (current edition)
Poland – European Tiger, Euromoney Books 1993 ISBN 1-85564-331-6
Finland – A Coming of Age, Euromoney Books, 1996 ISBN 1855 64437 1
The lost Palace of Whitehall, RIBA
Riba means one of the senses of "usury" . Riba is forbidden in Islamic economic jurisprudence fiqh and considered as a major sin...
, 1998 ISBN 1-872911-90-0
Postman’s Park: G.F.Watts Memorial to Heroic Self-Sacrifice Watts Gallery, 2008 ISBN 978-0-9561022-1-8
Watts Chapel: A Guide to the Symbols of Mary Watts's Arts and Crafts Masterpiece, Philip Wilson Publishers, 2010, ISBN 978-0-85667-692-5
An Artists’ Village
, Philip Wilson Publishers, 2011, ISBN 978-0-85667-696-3
Paolo Cavinato – Constellation
, Royal British Society of Sculptors, 2011 ISBN 978-0-9521592-5-4