Stuart Semple b.1980

Over the last two decades Stuart Semple has built up a diverse and challenging body of work across multiple disciplines. Thanks to the support of brave collectors, galleries and museums he has enjoyed numerous solo and group exhibitions worldwide.

Stuart has a deep belief that art is neither an object nor an activity, but rather an experience that exists in the space between an artist’s intention and the participant.

This duty towards ‘experience making’ affords him the opportunity to play across a variety of devices; from internet performance, code, painting, drawing, printmaking, sculpture, popup stores, public art, happenings, broadcasting, culture jamming, even chemical formulas, paint itself or a good joke. However, it is Painting that has remained a true love and the backbone of Semple’s practice for the last 20 years.

His enduring love for music, poetry and the image-world give him a unique palette in which to weave emotional and critical narratives. These are approachable and understandable, whilst remaining challenging and nuanced beyond their surface. His art is an art for everyone.

Although diverse in it’s presentation, Semple’s body of work orbits around a handful of recurring themes; anxiety, society, cultural history, technology, connection, community and freedom. Ultimately landing with a clear-minded sense of utility, that art itself should have a social function. This is no more evident than in what he refers to as his ’social works’, these being charity funds, awareness raising campaigns, artist support groups and shared studios.

After studying fine art at the Yorkshire Sculpture Park, Semple’s works have been exhibited at numerous solo and group exhibitions, fairs and biennials and at institutions including The Barbican, ICA London, Goss Michael Foundation, Frieze, Art Basel Miami, Denver Art Museum and The Whitworth. 

He has created large-scale public projects for cities including Melbourne, Dublin, London, Moscow and Manchester. His most ambitious was Happy City (2018) In which he created several large scale public interventions throughout Denver which was documented in the Amazon Prime documentary ‘Mr. Happy’.

Semple has presented for BBC TV and his 2019 ‘Hostile Design’ program for BBC Radio 4 was nominated for a radio academy award. He has written for The Guardian, Huffington Post, Vogue and held a weekly column for Art of England Magazine. His work has been featured in publications including Wired, Financial Times, GQ, Flash Art, ArtForum, Modern Painters, The Art Newspaper, New York Times, Architectural Digest and others. 

Semple regularly speaks on art and mental health and has appeared at Denver Art Museum, Oxford University, Royal College of Art, The Southbank Center, The Whitworth, Frieze London and others.

On the first International Day of Happiness Stuart Semple was honoured by the UN with a Happiness Hero medal in recognition for his “HappyCloud” performance from Tate Modern in London. 

Semple is an ambassador for mental health charity Mind, with whom he initiated the creative therapies fund throughout England and Wales.



Born in Bournemouth,



School of Art and Design,



Bretton Hall,

Yorkshire Sculpture Park

Lives and works in Dorset



‘Dancing On My Own’, Bermondsey Project Space, London, UK


‘Happy City’, Various locations: Denver Art Museum, Red Rocks, union Station, Dairy Block, Denver, US


‘Untitled’, Lane Meyer Projects, Denver, US


‘My Sonic Youth’, Fabien Castanier, Los Angeles, US

‘My Happy Place’, Coventry Centre of Contemporary Art, Coventry, UK


‘Anxiety Generation’, Delahunty, London, UK


‘Suspend Disbelief’, The Heritage Rooms, Victoria House, London, UK

‘Every Now And Then I Fall Apart’, ART13, London, UK


‘Everlasting Nothing Less’ Galleria UNO+UNO, Milan, Italy

‘It’s Hard to be a Saint in this City’, The Space, Hong Kong, China


‘The Happy House’, Morton Metropolis, London,UK


‘Lipstick Vogue’, The Cat Street Gallery, Hong Kong, China

‘Everlasting Nothing Less’, Anna Kustera, New York, US

‘Born To Run’, Terminal Crociere, Bari, Italy


‘Cult of Denim’ Selfridges, London, UK

‘Pop Disciple’ AUS18 Gallery, Milan, Italy


‘Fake Plastic Love part I’ Truman Brewery, London, UK

‘Fake Plastic Love part II’ Martin Summers Fine Art, London, UK


‘Epiphany’ Martin Summers Fine Art, London, UK


‘Post Pop Paradise’ SKIT, London, UK


‘Stolen Language’ The Art of Nancyboy A&D Gallery, London, UK


‘Nancyboy Paintings’ Pause, London, UK

‘Nancyboy Paintings’ BLU, Bournemouth, UK




Art for the Barbican, The Barbican Centre, London, UK

Face Value 2, Jealous Gallery, London, UK


Love Arts Festival, Leeds City Art Gallery, Leeds, UK

Sick! Festival, Whitworth Art Gallery, Manchester, UK


Skateboarts, Forum Kunst, Rotweil, Germany

An Infinitely beautiful Mind, The Knapp Gallery, London, UK

Gallery Artists, Fabien Castanier Pop-UP, Miami, US

Assemblage, Stolen Space, London, UK

Friends & Family, Fabien Castanier Gallery, Los Angeles, US


Ghosts: How We Live in the Future, Fine Art Society Contemporary, London,UK


The Macmillan De’Longhi Arts Programme, Pallant House, UK

Bad Boy, New Arts Projects, London, UK

Night At The Museum, Moscow, Russia

First Fortnight, Dublin, Ireland


Articulate, Victoria Miro, London, UK

The Cloud, De Meerse, Hoofddorp, Netherlands


Jahresringe, Schloss Wiesen, Germany

„ein weißes Feld“ sammlung FIEDE Collection, Germany

AKA Peace, ICA, London, UK

Echoes, Fine Art Society Contemporary, London. UK


Polemically Small, Charlie Smith, London, UK

Mindful, Old Vic Tunnels, London, UK

Re:Define, Goss-Michael Foundation, Dallas, UK

Art HK11, Hong Kong, CN

Polemically Small, Torrance Art Museum, California, US

MOMAC, Gloustershire, Roberta Moore Contemporary, UK

Desire, Portman Gallery, London, UK


The Metal Ball, Museum of Arts and Design, New York, US

Art HK10, Hong Kong, CN

Kate Brandt Pink, University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee, US

Nobody gets to see the Wizard. Not No One Not No How, Anna Kustera, NYC, US


Scope Art Fair, Miami, US

Gold Rush, Roberta Moore Contemporary, London, UK

Pavilion of Art & Design, London, UK

Art HK09, Hong Kong, UK


Ruby Green Foundation, Nashville, US

Signal 8, The Cat Street Gallery, Hong Kong, CN

Art Kessaris, Mykonos, Greece

Next Art Fair, Chicago, US

Art HK08, Hong Kong, CN

Romance, Kowalsky Gallery, London, UK

Bergamo Arte Fiera, Bergamo, Italy

Urbanity on Paper, Anna Kustera Gallery, NYC, US


Do You Nomi, AUS18 Gallery, Milan Italy

Art Miami, Miami, US

Multiples 1, Architecture + Design Museum, Los Angeles, US


I’ll Be Your Mirror, Primo Alonso Gallery, London, UK

Xiclet Gallery, Sao Paulo Biennial, Sao Paulo, Brazil

I’ll Be Your Mirror, Independents Biennial, Liverpool, UK

Irresistible Paint, A&D Gallery, London, UK


Art of Love 2005, Oxo Gallery, London, UK


International ArtExpo, Mexico


Pop Culture’ Beatrice Royal, Hampshire, UK





“Dancing On My Own, Review”, Nathalie Olah, The Guardian, 30 Aug 2019

“Art of Now – Hostile Design’ , BBC Radio 4, Stuart Semple, September 2019

“Hostile By Design”, Stuart Semple, Thiiird Magazine, Issue #4, July 2018


“BE HAPPY, Experience the unifying art of Stuart Semple”, Lee Sharrock, STATE, issue 27, 2018

“Hostile Takeover – Who is welcome in our public spaces”, Big Issue, Liam Geraghty, Feb 2018

“A Q&A with Stuart Semple”, Jack Hutchinson, A-N, February 2018

“Stuart Semple launches campaign to eradicate hostile Design”, Anny Shaw, Art Newspaper, 31 Jan, 2018

Interview with Stuart Semple, Bislacci, Assemblage Magazine, Jan 2018


“Art Wars! Who owns the new colour black”, Stuart McGurk, British GQ, August, 2017

“Art Fight”, Adam Rogers, Wired, 22 June 2018

“Fundido A Negro”, Stuart Semple, Vogue Espana,  June 2017


“The Art of Infertility”, Matilda Battersby, The Independent, 26 August 2016

“Stuart Semple Is Not Afraid To Be Bold”, Melissa Mellati, Flaunt Magazine, August 2016

“The Art Of The Deal”, Suzanne Charle, Gotham, Summer 2016

“Stuart Semple, My Sonic Youth – Review”, Shana Nys Dambrot. Jan/Feb 2016

“Annish Kapoor is Banned From Buying The World’s Pinkest Paint”, Kevin Holmes, Vice, 10 November 2016


“Your Laptop Is A Masterpiece”, Dale Eisinger, The Daily Beast, 2 November 2015

“The Interview: Stuart Semple”, Karim Khan, Hunger, 12 October 2015

“Want To Buy Some Digital Art? Just Head To eBay” Thomas Gorton, Dazed & Confused, March 2015

“Stuart Semple, Anxiety Generation – Review”, Jonathan R Jones, Modern Painters, February 2015


“What on earth would Leo Castelli have thought?”, Gareth Harris and Anny Shaw, The Art Newpaper, 03 December 2014

“Voice Of An Anxiety Generation”, Danielle Richardson, Shortlist, Issue 351, 27th November 2014

“Where to buy…”, Digby Warde-Aldam, The Week, 22 November 2014 / Issue 998

“The Cultural Provocateur” Alex Christian & Louise Donovan Shortlist The Brit List Issue Issue 350 / 20th November 2014

Stuart Semple’s private view’ Tatler, 18th November 2014

Pop Goes the Paining’ Cristina Ruiz, Vanity Fair : On Art, November 2014

Semple’s Mind’ Lorna Davies, Mayfair Times The Art Issue, October 2014

Cloudy with a chance of artistic smiley faces’, Aidan Dunne, The Irish Times, 6th January 2014


Personal style: Stuart Semple As told to David Hayes’, Financial Times, 19th October 2013

Stuart Semple’ Jacopo Nuvolari, 1883, Issue 9 Summer 2013

The Interview: Stuart Semple’ Karim Khan, Hunger, 28th February 2013

Sometimes Ideas Don’t Need Huge Platforms To Work’ Theodora Barker, IDOL, S/S Issue 2013


draw with words, paint with frames, be a poet of art’, Veronica Renato, Muse Magazine

Art of Darkness’, Paul Croughton, The Sunday Times Magazine

Stuart Semple’ Ysabelle Cheung, Time Out

Stuart Semple on how it’s Hard to be a Saint in this City,’ Mary Agnew, ARTINFO China

Stuart Semple’, Leanne Mirandilla, HK Magazine


Write On!’ Stephanie Hirschmiller,

Future Girl’ Roxane Mesquida x Stuart Semple, Filler


Lady Gaga x Stuart Semple : Pop Hybrid’, WestEast Magazine

Semple collection inspired by mental Britain’, BBC News, Jane Witherspoon

I’m Afraid To Swallow’, The Evening Standard, Liz Hoggard

Stuart Semple, Morton Metropolis’, The Arts Desk, Josh Spero

Popular Culture and the Aesthetic Discourse’, Aesthetica, Cherie Federico

Commenti al moto contemporaneo’, Italian Vogue, Leonardo Clausi

Semple Pleasures’, Live City & Islington, Mark Kebble

Stuart Semple’ The New Order, Yasmin Bryce

Pop Matters’ Filler, Jennifer Lee


The New Face of Brit Art’ Kee Magazine, Rachel Duffell

Semple Pleasures’ Esquire

London Calling’ Prim, Kristin Ferrandino

An Exhibition on the Implosion of Popular Culture’ Aesthetica, Cherie Federico

Painting Through A Complex Lens’ L’UOMO Vogue, Alan Prada

Storm Clouds Give Way to Smileys over London’ The Times, Kaya Burges

Oltre Il Pop’ Urban, Giovanni Cervi

Playing With Art and it’s Symbols’ L’UOMO Vogue, Alan Prada


Stuart Semple: Keeping the Brit Art Flag Flying ’ Palladium, Catherine Wheatley

Duck Toy’ La Repubblica, Alessandro Retico

20 Best up-and-coming Artists’ Independent, Alice Jones

Does my art look big in this?’ The Independent on Sunday, Rachel Shields

Stuart Semple and the Limitless Language of Art’ Zoot, Andrea Probosch

Stuart Semple’ Blag, Sarah J. Edwards

Pop Art & Mass Culture’ Aesthetica, Niamh Coghlanr

Stuart Semple’ Exhibart, Marta Silvi

Giovane Inglese, Pittore New Wave’ Arte, Cristina Campanini

Golden Pop’ Elle Italia, Pia Capelli

Paint It Bleak’ ARTnews, Eric Bryant


Stuart Semple’ Zoot, Matt Hussey

Stuart Semple; 80s influences & popular youth culture’ Aesthetica, Shona Fairweather

Neopop’ Arte, Pia Capelli

Io Che Mixo Gli Ottanta’ D Magazine, Le Repubblica, Leonora Sartori

Fake Plastic Love’ Financial Times, Peter Aspden

Stuart Semple’ Art of England, Pam Bates

The Black Market’ Saachi Online, Doug McClemont

East End Boy’ Attitude, Caroline Smith

Generation Now’, Milly Glaister

Semple Things’ Angel Magazine, Mark Kebble


Let The Show Begin’ Tatler, Clare Milford Haven

Bright Young Thing’ Harpers Bazaar, Francesca Martin


Burn Paradiso Burn’ Pig, Giovanni Cervi


New Art Rises’ Sunday Telegraph, Charlotte Edwardes

RIP YBA’ The Art Newspaper, Louisa Buck




I’ll Be Your Mirror, Eb & Flow Gallery, London, UK


Mindful, Old Vic Tunnels, London, UK


This Is England’, Galleria Uno+Uno, Milan, Italy

Uber Collision: Epic Fail’, Idea Generation Gallery, London (curated by Stuart Semple & Harry Malt) UK

Bazooka- Kiki & Loulou Picasso’ Aubin Gallery, London, UK

This Is England’, Aubin Gallery, London, UK


London Loves the way things fall apart’, Galleria Aus18, Milan (curated by Stuart Semple & Cecilia Antolini) Italy


Mash-Ups – post pop fragments and detournements’ Kowalsky Gallery, London, UK


The Black Market’ Anna Kustera Gallery, NYC (curated by Stuart Semple & Ju$t Another Rich Kid), US


Non Compos Mentis’ Adlib Gallery, Wakefield, UK




L’Oreal Professional


Bugari | Design Hotels


Placebo | Bulgari | Rolls Royce


Top Sante | Castor srl, Lubiam & Pasotti Ombrelli


My Beautiful City | Westfield


Aubin & Wills | BT & Harvey Nichols | Gary Numan | Blag


Smeg | Aubin & Wills | Amnesty International


The Futureheads | West East Magazine | Lady Gaga


Moncler | The Prodigy |  Muse | Umbro


Selfridges | Levis | Diesel | 7 for all Mankind | Evisu | Subliminal Girls |


NoiWear | Stimuli Magazine (with Ju$t Another Rich Kid)


Ju$t Another Rich Kid



ʻMy Sonic Youthʼ, Fabien Castanier


Anxiety Generation’ Publisher: The Antithesis

Think Pink’ Publisher: The Antithesis


Suspend Disbelief’ Publisher: The Antithesis


Jahresringe Schloss Wiesen’, Friedrich Gräfling

2012 – 2014

Macmillan De’Longhi Arts Auction

It’s Hard to be a Saint in this City’, The Space


Mindful, Old Vic Tunnels

Re:Define, Goss-Michael Foundation


The Happy House’, Morton Metropolis


Born To Run’, Bari Terminal Crociere


Pop Disciple’, Aus18 Gallery, VanillaEdizioni


Bergamo Arte Fiera’, VanillaEdizioni

Fake Plastic Love’, Martin Summers Fine Art


Epiphany’, Martin Summers Fine Art



My Happy Colouring Flip Book by Stuart Semple, Bigger Ltd, UK


This Is Our Time, Cat Garcia, UK


Pop Psychedelic, BigBros Workshop, Last Gasp


Psychonauts, Sailors Of The Psyche’, Beautiful/Decay Book, USA

The Joyce Handbook, first edition, HK


Creative Space: Urban Homes of Artists and Innovators’, Francesca Gavin, Lawrence King, UK


Playground 1, Zach Gold & Julie Ragolia, NYC


300% Cotton, Lawrence King Publishing, UK

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