Back To List of Artists


Bridget Riley was born in London in 1931. After spending the war years with her mother, sister and aunt in Cornwall, she studied at Goldsmiths College and the Royal College of Art.

Riley first attracted critical attention with the dazzling black and white paintings she began to make in 1961. These works became celebrated for their disturbing and disorientating optical effects (for which the term ‘Op Art’ was coined), as well as for their undeniable and surprising beauty. Her participation in the seminal exhibition, The Responsive Eye, at the Museum of Modern Art in New York in 1965, established her as an artist of the first rank. This position was confirmed at the Venice Biennale in 1968 when she became the first British contemporary painter and the first woman to win the International Prize for painting.