Sarah Spencer

Sarah Spencer studied painting at Camberwell School of Art and gained a Scholarship from The Arts Club for postgraduate study at the Royal Academy Painting Schools.

Her work is held in public and private collections at home and abroad, and she is currently preparing for her eleventh solo exhibition in London at the Russell Gallery. She was elected as a member of the New English Art Club in 2005 and is a member of the Federation of British Artists.

She has received major national and international awards for her work and has exhibited with the National Portrait Gallery’s BP Portrait Award, the Royal Academy, Royal Society of Portrait Painters and is a regular exhibitor at the Mall Galleries. In 2013 she was awarded the NEAC Painter-Stainer prize, and in 2011 was selected for inclusion as “one of ‘Britain’s most eminent contemporary figurative artists” in the ‘Pure Gold’ exhibition celebrating the Federation of British Artists’ 50th anniversary.

Scholarships, Awards, Prizes

2018 Elected Vice President of the New English Art Club
2013 Worshipful Company of Painter-Stainer prize at the New English Art Club
2006 Elected Member of the New English Art Club
1995 Elizabeth Greenshield Commonwealth Major Award For Painting
1993 Direct Support Arts Grant, South East Arts Council
1991 Haite Travel Scholarship
1991 Duff Greet Drawing Prize
1991 Creswick Landscape Prize
1989 The Arts Clubs Scholarship
1989 David Murray Landscape Scholarship
1988 Gordon Macara Prize for Excellence
1986 WS Vellum Drawing Prize

Solo Exhibitions

2015 The Russell Gallery
2013 The Russell Gallery
2008 The Russell Gallery
2006 Saatchi Gallery / Your Gallery
2006 The Russell Gallery
2004 New Grafton Gallery
2002 New Grafton Gallery
1997 Offer Waterman Fine Art
1994 New Grafton Gallery
1993 Waterman’s Fine Art, London
1992 New Grafton Gallery, London

Selected Mixed Exhibitions


2018 Russell Gallery Summer Show
2018 Fosse Gallery Summer Exhibition of Fosse Gallery Artists
2018 Mall Galleries: New English Art Club Annual Exhibition
2018 Geedon Gallery, Exhibition of New English Artists
2018 Contemporary British Artists at the Fosse Gallery
2018 The View Gallery
2018 Russell Gallery Winter Exhibition
2017 The Sentinel Gallery Kaleidoscope Exhibition
2017 Fosse Gallery Select Exhibition of New English Artists
2017 Women in Art, Burgh House, Hampstead
2017 The Mall galleries, New English Exhibition
2017 Hampstead Art Fair
2017 Linden Hall Studios Gallery
2017 Seascape, Skyscape and the Colour Blue at The Sentinel Gallery
2016 The Geedon Gallery
2016 Hampstead Art Fair
2016 New English Art Club Open, London
2016 Russell Gallery Summer and Winter Exhibitions
2015 London Contemporary Art Fair 2015
2015 New English Art Club Open, Mall Galleries
2015 Royal Society of British Artists at the Mall Galleries
2015 Piers Feetham Gallery: Small Paintings Group
2015 The Small Self Portrait Exhibition at Hogarth’s House
2014 Lynn Painter-Stainer Exhibition at the Mall Galleries
2014 Osbourne Studio Gallery ‘Sea and Land’ Exhibition
2013 Tenth Anniversary Exhibition The Russell Gallery
2012 Bankside Gallery, London
2012 The Russell Gallery group exhibition
2011 PURE GOLD : FBA selected exhibitor
2010 NEAC Annual
2010 Cheltenham Martins Gallery
2010 Grapevine Gallery, Burnham Market
2010 Art London
2009 Turner Contemporary ‘Generate’ Exhibition and Project
2009 20/21st Century International Art Fair, Royal College
2007 Country Living Fair
2007 A Gallery, Wimbledon
2006 Royal Society of Portrait Painters Exhibition, Mall Galleries
2006 National Portrait Gallery BP Portrait Exhibition
2006 Artifex Gallery
2005 Art London, Chelsea
2004 New Grafton Portrait Exhibition
2003 Jenny Granger Gallery
1998 Bank Street Gallery Three Person Show
1996 A New Beginning, Park Walk Gallery
1996 Chelsea Arts Fair, Royal College of Art
1995 Ten British Painters, Waterman’s Fine Art
1995 Artists of Today and Tomorrow, New Grafton Gallery
1995 Thompson’s Gallery Drawing Show
1995 Waterman’s Fine Art
1994 Thompson’s Gallery
1993 Long and Ryle Gallery
1992 Cadogan Gallery
1992 Critics’ Show, Cooling Gallery
1991 Painting Today Show, Bonham’s Fine Art
1991 A View of the New, Royal Overseas League
1991 Discerning Eye Exhibition
1991 Royal Academy Summer Show
1991 New English Arts Club
1990 Royal Institute of Oil Painters
1990 Hunting Group Show FBA


500 Portraits’ 2011, National Portrait Gallery Publications ISBN 978 1 85514 448 4

Pure Gold’ 2010 FBA Publications ISBN 978 0 9560219 3 9

Who’s Who in Art: Biographies of Leading Men and Women in the World of Art Today ’ Editions 1997 -2015 Charles Baile de Lapierriere ISBN 13: 978-0904722413


2015 Artist and Illustrators Magazine: ‘My Studio’ feature by Steve Pill
2012 Country Living Magazine ‘Sarah Spencer: A Sense of Style’ by Corinna Kitchen
2010 Saga Magazine
2008 Art in London
2005 BBC Homes and Antiques
2005 The Daily Telegraph ‘Family’ section, Sarah Lonsdale
2005 The Week
2004 Vogue
1998 House and Garden
1997 Financial Times ‘At the Dealers’ Georgina Adam
1994 Art Review ‘Poetic Vision’ by David Wolfers
1993 The Independent
1992 The Times: ‘Picking out the Plums’ John Russell Taylor review
1992 Robert Harris in ‘Around the Galleries feature:
1992 Exhibitions Diary, Country Life
1991 Daily Mail 1991 ‘Class Portrait’ Madelaine Harper




Sarah Lonsdale, Columnist, Sunday Telegraph, 2013

I gave my husband a painting by Sarah Spencer for his fiftieth birthday a few years ago – one of those cunning presents that the giver enjoys as much as the receiver. At first sight a rather sombre study of grey skies above Whitstable beach, it produces different effects throughout the day. Depending on the weather outside, sometimes it threatens a violent rain storm and other times it promises clear, calm skies after the squall has passed.

Sarah Spencer’s exquisite studies of sea- and sky-scapes embody opposing, yet complementary emotions. Joyous celebrations of light as it sparkles off water or streams through clouds, her paintings are also evocative expressions of a certain contemplative mood, like that of the solitary walker who comes across an empty beach above which ominous storm clouds broil, or, following a summer shower, promises sweet, damp delights.

Yet it is the restrained and unsentimental response to what she sees that makes Sarah such a powerful painter. Whether in a vast East Anglian sky or an intimate close-up of a child or still-life, her muted palette and precise layering of tones and glazes produce a unique combination of delicacy and control.

Sarah’s tenth solo show has been eagerly awaited by collectors of her work, both private and public and which include the art critic Brian Sewell, and prominent writers and actors. Having exhibited at the National Portrait Gallery, the Royal Academy, The Royal Society of Portrait Painters and New English Art Club at the Mall Galleries, Sarah is now firmly established, in the words of artist and critic William Packer, as one of ‘Britain’s most eminent contemporary figurative artists.

Daily Telegraph 5th November 2005 – ´Around the Galleries´ by Robert Harris

…Sarah Spencer captures the mature quality of an old Master in paintings that reveal a gift for bringing to life a scene that might be thought featureless.

The Independent, 28th June 1999

David Wolfers has an eye for young talent, especially that emanating from the Royal Academy Schools, as shown in his exhibition of paintings and drawings by Sarah Spencer. Sarah Spencer captures the mature quality of an Old Master.

House & Garden, January 1998 – ‘Inside Outside’

…Trained at the Camberwell School of Art, Sarah has exhibited regularly at the Royal Academy and her work is held both in private and national collections. Nowadays, she lives by the sea and her paintings, which have a sensitive and mature quality, reflect the influences of such surroundings.

The Week, October 1995 – ‘Ten British Artists at Waterman’s Fine Art’

…another Waterman high-flier is Sarah Spencer who specializes in small seascapes of Whitstable .
Waterman’s young artist tempers the traditional with her own individual talent and offers a convincing alternative to dead sheep.

The Times 1994 – ‘Picking out the Plums’

Featured artist in the article ´Picking out the Plums at the Royal Academy Summer Show: Sarah Spencer´s tiny exquisite oils in muted tones of blue and grey are always in demand

Country Life April 1993

This is the second one woman show by Sarah Spencer. Her work has a maturity and restraint which belie her age.

Mail on Sunday 1992

Art writer Edward Lucie – Smith chose five artists he believes will have a particular impact on British art of the future: Sarah Spencer´s paintings are very elegant and rather lovely in the old St. Ives tradition. They are curiously old-fashioned but very sophisticated. This artist’s work is by far the most delicate.