Elaine Thomas

Elaine Thomas

The woman responsible for creating the second largest art and design college in Europe continues to paint her series of instantly recognisable figures. Inspired by the Romanesque and the Mediaeval, wherever they are found, as well as Greek, Roman and Indian Art, her figures take on postures, cavorting, posing and intermingling, bringing to mind both the biblical and the pagan.

The work is evocative, funny, feminine, it is increasingly collectible, and reflects the irrepressible energy and mischief of the artist.

Awarded a CBE in 2011 for her work as Vice Chancellor of the University of Creative Arts and for her outstanding contribution to the creative arts in higher education, Elaine Thomas continues to exhibit at According to McGee.

Says Elaine, “As well as being autobiographical the work is autographic like handwriting. The use of gestures, flourishes and other devices come to represent a sense of personal identity and identification. Irony and hidden meaning pervade the work and may be evident to some. The stance adopted could be described as that of the satirist, the caricaturist, the cartoonist – seeking to entertain, to comment and to communicate the many things that go unsaid.”



  • Lewis Elton Gallery, University of Surrey (2004),
  • York St John College (2004)
  • Yorkshire Museum (2004).

She has presented the lecture ‘Adopting a Stance’ at Sheffield Hallam University, the University of Surrey and the Yorkshire Museum.

View Elaine Thomas in Store Back to the top