The eldest son of Robert Morton NANCE, Dicon NANCE being his younger brother by two years. Robin was born in Nancledra, and at the early age of just 13 was the Art Union of Cornwall prize winner (£3. 0s. 0d.) in the 1920 RCPS September show. He was recorded as being from Carbis Bay and exhibiting as Master Robin Nance. This is (at time of writing) the first record of him showing work.
From 1924 he went on to train under the 'arts and crafts' Master cabinet maker, Romney GREEN, in Christchurch, Hampshire, which was to have its own spin-off for Arts and Crafts in Cornwall (See Hardie 1995) when Green sent work in to NAG, namely wood carving and inlaid woodwork, to be exhibited with Robert T Morton Nance.
He set up his own workshop in woodworking in 1933, which was suspended during the war years when he served in the Army. After the war he returned to St Ives, and with his brother Dicon re-opened the gallery/workshop on the quayside. Their work was in furniture- making, as well as crafting pottery wheels for the LEACH POTTERY, who was in Robin's words 'not very practical'. Both he and his brother, like their parents before them, inclined to the Arts and Crafts philosophy of hand-making and natural designs for chairs, occasional tables and honest craftsmanship. In 1951 he published 'My world as a woodworker' in The Cornish Review (Summer 1951, no 8).
Robin closed his business in 1972, and lived in St Ives. He is buried at St Senara's Churchyard at Zennor, Cornwall.
RCPS September 1920
Penwith Society of Arts in Cornwall (Founder Member)
Correspondence on death date & burial/gravestone (2011)
Hardie (1995) 100 Years/Newlyn; (2009) Artists in Newlyn & West Cornwall p338
The Tate St Ives 1939-64, Twenty Five Years of Painting, Sculpture and Pottery (group photo 1955 p134)
Tovey Creating a Splash (under father's name); (2010) Sea Change
Whybrow (2006) Leach Pottery St Ives