Ben Edge


Location: London

Edge is predominately a figurative painter interested in portraiture, folklore and story telling whose paintings depict the extraordinary lives of ordinary people. He believes his interests originate from his childhood. Edge grew up around colourful and eccentric family members who would tell him remarkable stories. In 2009 his painting ‘The Animal Handler’ was selected for exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery as part of the BP Portrait Award. Edge’s grandfather, who was the subject of the painting, was a porter at Smithfield meat market as well as an animal handler in his spare time. Over the years his flat was home to a wide array of exotic pets including, chimpanzees, monkeys, lizards, pythons and and even once a tiger cub that had been lent to him by a friend who worked at the circus. Edge cites his grandfather, as well as his family in general, as a major influence on his work. Not only are they inspiring characters, but creative people who have a wide array of interests, from painting, drawing and wood-carving.

Edge is a self-proclaimed perfectionist. His perfectionism is mirrored in his work through his clean and precise style of painting. Edge is fascinated by the attention to detail and craft that is often found in Folk and Naive Art as well as the traditions of religious and northern Renaissance painting. These combined influences inspired the title of his debut solo show ‘Folk Renaissance’ that took place at the HIX Art gallery, London, in March 2017. Since his show last year Edge has undertaken a new project exploring the folklore and traditional folk customs of the British Isles and is travelling around the country gathering source material and creating a new body of work in response to his research.


Ben Edge:

Born 1985


London Metropolitan University, (2005 – 2008), BA Fine Art

West Kent College, (2002 – 2005), ND fine art - Foundation in Fine Art

Selected Exhibitions:

2018: Group Show, ‘Lore of the land’ (Curated by David Harrison) Churchgate Gallery, Somerset.

2017: Mayfair Art Weekend, Browns Hotel, London

2017: Solo Show, 'Folk Renaissance', HIX ART (Formerly CNB Gallery) London

2015: The Ruth Borchard Self-Portrait Prize, Piano Nobile, Kings place, London

2015: Two man show (with Ben Westley Clarke), ‘Contemporary folklore’, Leyden Gallery, London

2014: Group show, ‘Nuance outcasts’, Angus Hughes Gallery, London

2012: Group Show, ‘Black Xmas’, Signal Gallery, London

2011: Group show, ‘Punk and Beyond’, Signal Gallery, London

2010: BP Portrait award, National Gallery of Scotland, Edinburgh

2009: BP Portrait award, Southampton City Art Gallery, Southampton

2009: BP Portrait award, National Portrait Gallery, London

2009: Group show, Ground, Chiswick London

2008: Group show, The Light Box, Chiswick, London

2008: Group show, ‘Gibbo’s makes a scene’ Gibbo’s, London

2007: Group show, Transition Gallery, London

2007: Group show, ‘Peace Camp’, Brick Lane Gallery, London

2006: Group show, Transition Gallery, London


Short-listed for ‘The Ruth Borchard Self-Portrait Prize’, 2015

Short-listed for the BP Portrait award, National Portrait gallery, 2009

Short-listed for the Ellen Clarkson Award, London Metropolitan University, 2007

West Kent college foundation, hard working achievement award of excellence in fine art – Kent county council, 2004 -2005