Eleanor Watson graduated in 2012 from Wimbledon College of Art with First Class Honours in Painting and has since completed the Drawing Year at the Royal Drawing School. Eleanor lives and works in London and has exhibited in London, New York, Miami and Amsterdam.
She was shortlisted for The Young Masters Art Prize in 2014. In 2016/2017, Watson was awarded the biennial Jonathan Vickers Fine Art Award, which is one of the most prestigious art competitions in the UK. This award, open to emerging painters gives recipients a bursary of £18,000, plus a studio at Banks Mill, a contribution to the cost of materials, a nine-month period of support and mentoring, including access to the University of Derby’s College of Arts and a final exhibition at Derby Museums. Watson's resultant body of work, inspired by the theme of the Award a ‘Sense of Place’, responds to the people, landscape and heritage of Derbyshire. Her exhibition, Dear Reader, took place at Derby Museums and Gallery, 15th September - 9th November 2017.
"At the start of her residency Watson said:“As a relative newcomer to Derbyshire, I have approached the Award theme ‘A Sense of Place – the Changing Faces of Derbyshire’ as a very open-ended fact finding task. I hope to knit together a version of Derbyshire from both first and second-hand accounts. I spent the first few weeks exploring, beginning with literature, film and paintings. And, secondly, in the narrative of objects, as a clue or prop. I spent some time talking to Jonathan Wallis at Derby Museums about their collection. We spoke about the objects which Joseph Wright included in his portraits to better portray the sitter. My research led me to exploring the many influential and diverse female figures from the history of Derbyshire and my final exhibition reflected something of these women through paintings of interiors, landscapes, still life and film stills."