The annual RA Summer exhibition kicks off at Burlington House next week with a whole host of new and established talent from the art world.

Bridgeman Copyright Artist and Keeper of the Royal Academy, Eileen Cooper along with Bill Jacklin, are in charge of coordinating the largest open submission exhibition in the world, hanging over 1,200 in the space of just eight days.

The Royal Academy & Burlington House, London (b/w photo), English Photographer, (20th century) / Private Collection / © Look and Learn / Elgar Collection

The Royal Academy & Burlington House, London (b/w photo), English Photographer, (20th century) / Private Collection / © Look and Learn / Elgar Collection

At Bridgeman we represent a number of Royal Academicians, several of them will have works on display. Let’s take a look at a selection.


Anne Desmet RA

Bridgeman Copyright artist Anne Desmet RA has six works in this year’s show, below she describes her inspirations:

“As a Royal Academician, it is great privilege to be entitled to submit six works for the RA Annual Summer Exhibition each year. Two of my wood engravings (prints) in this year’s show were directly inspired by the neo-classical and modern architecture of Eton College, where I was artist-in-residence last spring, while two lithographs used Eton’s architecture as a springboard for two entirely invented, fantastical, architectural compositions. Two other lithographs depict the Leaning Tower of Pisa and the Baptistry of Pisa Cathedral. Those were inspired by many drawings I have made in repeated visits to Italy since I lived there as a Prix de Rome scholar in 1989-90. I drew these two particular images directly onto litho stones, last summer, at the excellent Hole Editions lithography studio in Newcastle where they were printed. It is an especial pleasure and an honour to be showing in this year’s exhibition as it was co-ordinated by Eileen Cooper RA and the two print galleries were hung by Rebecca Salter RA – both artists I hold in high esteem.”

Leaning Tower (2016) ; Rotunda (2016)

Leaning Tower (2016) ; Rotunda (2016)


Holly Frean

Bridgeman Studio artist Holly Frean describes her RA entry:

David Hockney Sees A Big Splash is painted in oil on a broken off bit of wooden palette and envisions Hockney’s eureka moment leading to his 1967 Californian poolside masterpiece A Bigger Splash. My painting is a homage to an artist hero of mine whom I admire for his ability (among other things) to stretch colour and pattern to suit his compositional visions. It forms part of a series of homages which celebrates the making of art-historically important paintings plucked from my mental library. A tutor once told me that being an artist is ‘playing with intent’. The challenge of using colour effectively and playing with paint are my primary motivators; I seek to balance the act of picture-making and the research involved to extend my practical knowledge of painting whilst bringing to life to subtle narratives around the creation of Art – usually invented scenes involving painters I admire for one reason or another, often played out from the point of view of a bemused bystander or a devoted studio assistant.

I am thrilled Eileen Cooper RA selected my work for Gallery 9 at the Summer Exhibition. I have quite a prominent spot and share the space with Allen Jones RA, Tom Philips RA and newly made joint-Academicians Gilbert & George so I’m in good company!”

A Bigger Splash, Holly Frean

A Bigger Splash, Holly Frean

Take a look at the works of the rest of the Bridgeman artists featured in this year’s RA Summer Exhibition:

Craigie Aitchison RA
Diana Armfield RA
John Bellany RA
Samuel Lamorna Birch RA
Elizabeth Blackadder RA
Frank Brangwyn RA
Frederick Cuming RA
Bernard Dunstan RA
Anthony Eyton RA
Mary Fedden RA
Barry Flanagan RA
William Gillies RA
Ken Howard RA
Vanessa Jackson RA
Augustus John RA
Paul Huxley RA
Julian Trevelyan RA
David Tindle RA

Find out more

Book now
The exhibition is 13th June – 20th August at Main Galleries, Burlington House. Saturday – Thursday, 10am – 6pm. Friday, 10am – 10pm