Orovida - as she preferred to be known - was born Orovida Camille Pissarro into an assimilated Jewish family and distinguished painting dynasty in Epping, Essex, England on 8 October 1893. She was the only daughter of the landscape painter, printmaker, wood engraver, designer and printer Lucien Pissarro (1863–1944) and the wood-engraver, designer, and printer Esther Pissarro (née Bensusan, 1870–1951), and was the granddaughter of the Impressionist painter Camille Pissarro (1830–1903). She began drawing and painting at an early age and was the first woman born into the Pissarro family to become a professional artist. She lived and worked predominantly in London, where she was a prominent member of several British arts clubs and societies.
She first learned to paint in the Impressionist style from her father, studying formally only briefly with Walter Sickert in 1913; she began experimenting with etching in 1914. In 1921 she held a joint exhibition with the French artist Marie Laurencin. Throughout her career, Orovida always remained outside mainstream British art movements. She was greatly influenced by an exhibition of Chinese Paintings and Japanese Screens held at the British Museum in 1924 and developed a personal style that combined elements of Japanese, Chinese, Persian, and Indian art. Her rejection of both Impressionism and her surname – she preferred to be known simply as Orovida – reflected her wish to achieve independence from the painting legacy of the Pissarro dynasty, although she remained proud of the connection, and in 1943 participated in an exhibition entitled ‘Three Generations of the Pissarro Family’ (a further show of this name was mounted after her death at the Leicester Galleries, London in 1977).
Later in her life, she took up oil painting and etching due to a deficiency of egg (and hence tempera) during the Second World War. She became absorbed in the study of animals at London Zoo, relating them to the people in their countries of origin. She remained active until the end of her life, while also developing and maintaining the Pissarro family archive, established by her parents in the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford. She exhibited widely with a number of solo shows at venues including the Redfern Gallery in London and participated in exhibitions at the Ben Uri Gallery (between 1934 and 1956) and the Women's International Art Club, of which she was an active and prominent member, as well as regularly at the Royal Academy between 1917 and 1967. She was also a prolific printmaker and held a solo exhibition of etchings and drawings at the Adelphi Galleries in 1919. Orovida Pissarro died in her home in London, England on 8 August 1968. The Ashmolean Museum, Oxford, held a memorial exhibition in 1969. Her works can be found in UK public collections including the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford; the London Borough of Camden; Manchester Art Gallery; Portsmouth Museum and the Royal Academy of Arts.