9 famous artists from Norfolk and Suffolk

Maggi Hambling in her studio

Maggi Hambling in her studio - Credit: Archant

John Constable 

Born in East Bergholt, artist John Constable went on to immortalise some of the region’s most iconic landscapes in his works, including Dedham Vale, Wivenhoe Park, and his most iconic piece, The Hay Wain.

At the age of 52, he was elected to the Royal Academy, and his legacy lives on to this day, as the area on the Suffolk-Essex border is affectionately dubbed ‘Constable Country’.  

Thomas Gainsborough 

Born in Sudbury in 1727, landscape and portrait painter Thomas Gainsborough certainly made waves during the 18th century.


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Gainsborough, who is best known for his 1750 piece ‘Mr and Mrs Andrew’ and 1770’s ‘The Blue Boy’, was also King George III and Queen Charlotte’s favourite painter.

Fans of Gainsborough can visit his birthplace, which is located at 46 Gainsborough Street in Sudbury.  

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John Crome 

One of Norfolk’s most famous painters, John Crome spent his career gracefully capturing his county’s landscape on canvas. Born in 1768, Crome was one of the principal artists and founding members of the Norwich School of Painters, and spent most of his life in the city.  

Lucian Freud 

This German-born renowned artist spent many of his years in Suffolk while studying at Cedric Morris' East Anglian School of Painting and Drawing in Dedham.

The grandson of famed psychoanalyst Sigmund Freud, some of his most famous works include ‘Cedric Morris’, ‘Portrait of Kitty’ and ‘Benefits Supervisor Sleeping’. 

Maggi Hambling 

Sudbury-born Maggie Hambling is one the region’s most revered living artists.

Having studied at both the East Anglian School of Painting and Drawing and the Ipswich School of Art, some of her biggest sculptures include ‘A Conversation with Oscar Wilde’, ‘A Sculpture for Mary Wollstonecraft’, and the controversial ‘Scallop’ on Aldeburgh beach. 

Alfred Munnings 

Known for his paintings of horses, portraits and landscapes, Sir Alfred Munnings was born in Mendham, Suffolk, in 1878.

His works were part of the art competitions at the 1928, 1932 and 1948 Summer Olympics, and he was also the president of the Royal Academy of Arts.  

Kieron Williamson 

Perhaps the youngest person on this list, 19-year-old Kieron Williamson has been a big name in the art world since he first burst onto the scene at the tender age of six.

Dubbed by many as a prodigy, the Holt-based artist works with watercolours, oils and pastels – and has seen many of his pieces fetch hundreds of thousands of pounds. 

John Sell Cotman 

Born in Norwich in 1782, John Sell Cotman was a famed marine and landscape painter.

He was also a member of the Norwich School of Painters alongside John Crome.

Educated at the Norwich Grammar School, his sons Miles Edmund and John Joseph Cotman both followed in his footsteps and became painters themselves.  

Colin Self 

This Rackheath, Norfolk native is one of the country’s most revered Pop Artists, and his works are best-known for their depictions of the Cold War.

The draughtsman, printmaker, sculptor and painter has spent time travelling around the world, and his works have been featured in a number of galleries across the globe. 


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