Reg Eldridge studied initially at Clapham School of Art (1937-39) under Vivian Pitchforth and, after the war, at St Martins under Ruskin Spear and Derrick Greaves. He exhibited from the mid 50s with the London Group, RBA and ROI and from the mid 70s for 20 years with the Royal Society of Portrait Painters. Now retired, he organises classes in life-painting and portraiture for the Strand Studio Club in Southwark, where most of his works which are on the site were painted.
Subsequently Eldridge exhibited with the Royal Society of British Artists and the Royal Institute of Oil Painters. He was invited to exhibit with The Royal Society of Portrait Painters in the early 1970’s and successfully exhibited with them for a period of over twenty years until 1995.
Following a succession of high profile portrait commissions and establishing himself as a distinguished British Portrait Painter in the mid 1970’s, Eldridge controversially decided to decline from undertaking all portrait commissions. The decision was driven by a strong belief that while following a commercial brief an artist is not able to produce the most creative and inspired work. Since taking this step over thirty years ago Eldridge has produced some of his most arresting and fluid, portrait, landscape, life paintings and drawings, many of which have not been shown until now.
Eldridge’s landscape paintings provide us with lyrical views of the English countryside but his nudes, his fascination with work in the Life Room, hold the greatest impact. The Times critic Richard Morrison selected Reg Eldridge’s ‘Prisoner of Love’, a life room study, as his favourite painting from over 300 at The Art of Love 2005 Open at oxo gallery.