Founded in 1910, The Chelsea Art Society is the oldest and sole survivor of the many art groups that blossomed in the area around that period. Rossetti and Turner began the trend to settle in Chelsea in the mid 19th Century, followed by Whistler, Sickert, Augustus John and John Singer Sargent. Amongst the group was Sir James Dromgole Linton, a frequent exhibitor at the Royal Academy and an Honorary member of the Scottish Water Colour Society. He chose Chelsea as the place to found an art group to exhibit annually.
The Chelsea Art Society flourished and even survived the disruption of two World Wars, revived in 1946 by Alfred Egerton Cooper RBA.
Its current President is Luke Martineau. There are currently around 100 members and artists are invited to join the Society through having shown exceptional work at the exhibition over a three year period. The majority of exhibitors tend to be residents of the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea but are free to apply from all over the UK.
Traditionally, the Mayors of Chelsea have always been patrons of the Society. Other past patrons have included Lord Olivier, Joyce Grenfell, Lord Thornycroft and Lord Rawlinson of Ewell QC. Present patrons include The Earl Cadogan DL. There are also distinguished honorary members, including Ken Howard OBE RA RWS NEAC.
The Worshipful Mayor of the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea
The Earl Cadogan DL
Ken Howard OBE RA PPNEAC
Serena Barrow - Member page
Luke Martineau - Member page
The society is a financially sound, non-profit making group with no residential qualifications for members or exhibitors. It is governed by a council comprised of members with an Honorary President, Vice President, Secretary and Treasurer. The President is usually someone of high artistic achievement.