Max Denson-Pender, 21, is a classically trained fine arts, painter based in London.

Max’s preference for oil paint is attributable to his ‘alla prima’ (wet on wet) painting style. As he explains, “My preference for working in oil is down to the paint’s slow drying time on the canvas; not only does this allow me to mix colours that won’t dry the minute I’ve made them; I can also work fast and confidently with good fresh, expressive brushstrokes, which in turn, offers me greater flexibility and opportunity to interpret what’s in front of me. Secondly, oil paint doesn’t dissolve in the lashing rain or cake up when the midday sun is beating down; this makes it the ideal medium for the extreme climates I too often find myself painting in.”

In the tradition of some of our most celebrated artists, Max is an advocate of painting “in situ” rather than from the comparative comfort of his studio. This approach has found him with his easel, brushes and paints on London Bridge for four, very cold weeks in January painting the Thames in the middle of the night (On London Bridge), seeking and gaining permission to be able to paint the iconic facade of number 10 Downing Street; the first artist in over 30 years to gain such permission (Against the Elements) to spending languorous afternoons in some of London’s finest hostelries capturing the ebb and flow of its thirsty denizens (The Scarsdale in Summer).

Max was born and originally brought up in Santiago Chile, before spells in the wilds of Wiltshire and the foothills bordering Barcelona; where the thirteen-year-old Max was mentored by a direct descendent of the legendary, Spanish painter, sculptor and ceramicist Joan Miró. Max currently resides in London. His nomadic upbringing meant jumping from school to school, speaking different languages, adjusting to new cultures and making new friends more frequently than most of us. In spite of this peripatetic existence, Max has enjoyed one constant in his life that has coursed through his veins from his earliest memories – his unflinching love of art and the firm belief that he was put on this planet to paint.

As James Napier, the founder of the London Atelier of Representational Arts (LARA), one of the top three classic, arts ateliers in world which still teaches the highly structured curriculum, originally to develop seventeenth century painters in Europe and where Max honed his skills for over three years, attests, “A very determined Max turned up on the LARA doorstep asking if he could join our atelier, unfortunately, on account of being only 14, we had to turn him away for two years as the course includes a hefty portion of nude painting. He returned days after his sixteenth birthday and took to the rigours of the course immediately. I’m not surprised he’s already hosting his first exhibition and I’m sure it won’t be his last.”


  • Invited into Number 10 Downing Street to be the first artist in three decades to paint a painting of No.10’s guarded front door from life- Sept 2018


  • Commissioned by 5 Hertford Street – Feb 2019


  • Commissioned by Team GB to paint their olympic torches – March 2019


  • Green Park’s HSBC branch purchases a print of Max’s painting ‘ The Ritz’ – May 2018


  • Max’s first solo exhibition, ‘The Heart of London’ taking place in the Scarsdale Tavern on April 30th to May 12th 2019, receives sponsorship by Fuller’s Brewery and Prudence Cummings – May 2018

  • 1st place N.A.D.F.A.S Young Artist Award at the Guggleton Gallery – Dec 2017

  • Sky Arts discuss a future TV program with Max called ‘Art in the Extreme’. Involving him and other artists traveling around the world to capture the roughest parts of the planet – Nov 2016

  • Art Scholarship to King’s School, Bruton – 2011