John Shelley Paintings

Overview | Results & Highlights | Valuation | News

We hold four dedicated Modern Art & Design auctions each year featuring the work of John Shelley. We offer a free appraisal service as well as a free collection service for items consigned to these auctions.

John Shelley Overview


Shelley was born in Margate, Kent, in 1938, and made a name for himself in the art world through his surreal depictions of the British countryside. He studied art formally at the Wimbledon Art School in 1953, before continuing his artistic education at the Slade School in 1958. A painting of his was accepted into the Royal Academy Summer Show for the first time in 1968, where it sold immediately. After this, his painting career took off, and he had several more works accepted in the Royal Academy, one of which was purchased by the Tate. He died in 2020.




Whilst Shelley’s paintings are of the British countryside, in the sense that they are heavily inspired by them, the artist was keen to establish that the landscapes within his paintings are imaginary, lending them to surrealist interpretation. The way that Shelley painted from imagination speaks to the surrealist assertion of dreams over rational depictions of life, meaning that surrealist works, like Shelley’s, have a dreamlike and fantastical quality to them; overgrown and isolated. At Wilson55, our in-house expert Stephen Sparrow has years of experience in assessing and valuing John Shelley’s work, so do get in touch if you’d like to learn more about a piece you own or discuss a potential sale or valuation.


Modern Art Directory

Terry Frost, Untitled

Lot Alerts

Never miss out - sign up for our Lot Alerts and find the lots you're looking for.

Set up free alerts


Join our Modern Art newsletter to stay up to date with auction news and articles.

Free Auction Valuation

We offer a free valuation service to anyone considering the sale of items through our auctions. Complete the form below and one of our specialists will get back to you promptly.

Fields marked * are required.

Images *

Drag and drop .jpg images here to upload, or click here to select images.


News & Articles