Lucy Raverat was born in Cambridge in 1948 into an academic and bohemian family. Her father was a don at Trinity College, Cambridge, her mother Sophie, the daughter of Gwen Raverat, wood engraver and author of the classic PERIOD PIECE: A CAMBRIDGE CHILDHOOD. Gwen, grand daughter of Charles Darwin, married the French painter Jacques Raverat, and Lucy's mother and her sister spent their early childhood in St. Paul de Vence. Amongst their circle were André Gide, Rupert Brooke, Stanley Spencer, Eric Gill and Leonard and Virginia Woolf, who stayed with them in France and with whom Jacques Raverat conducted an extended correspondence (VIRGINIA WOOLF AND THE RAVERATS, London 2004). This Bloomsbury connection, along with a deep sense of a family community engendered by the large Darwin clan, has sustained itself into Lucy's generation. 'Painting,' Lucy recalls, 'was what grown-ups did and an entirely normal way of passing one's time.'
In the 1960's Lucy Raverat studied briefly at Hornsey College of Art, then travelled to India, returning to live for some three years in an isolated cottage on the moors near Lancaster. Now married and with children already, she was able to make painting her main pursuit once more. With the encouragement of Richard Demarco in Edinburgh she participated in several exhibitions, before moving in the early 1990s to live in Southern France.