Born in Bolton, Senior studied at Clifton College, Chelsea School of Art and Cambridge University where he read Modern Languages. He lived in London from 1957 and exhibited widely including with the Redfern Gallery, Wildenstein, Roland Browse and Delbanco and Arnolfini Gallery. His early work showed him to be in sympathy with the 'Kitchen Sink' group of painters who concentrated on ordinary domestic scenes employing heavy impasto to create highly textured paint surfaces. A major exhibition of works painted in this manner was staged at The Art Gallery, Bolton in 1961. He had a wide range of solo shows, including Crane Kalman and Fieldborne Galleries, Architectural Association, Richard Demarco Gallery in Edinburgh, Ashgate Gallery in Farnham and abroad, including Ireland, Italy and America. Writing about his work he has said, 'Painting has provided for me a vital link with the visible and tangible world - the only one to which, I feel, we can honestly relate. My subjects are the people, places, and things I have known. With these I identify, and I aim in my work to give them memorability and some degree of permanence. Hence I have remained a figurative artist, and a Realist.' His work has won several awards and CASW, Nuffield Foundation, Financial Times, Hampstead Museum and Bolton Museum and Art Gallery hold examples of his work. Whilst many of his contemporaries turned to abstraction during the 1960s, Senior has remained determinedly a realist painter and in recent years has completed a series of large scale crowd pictures featuring figures in streets, markets and museums etc. These highly distilled images, revealing acute powers of observation, have a haunting, almost ghostly quality. Latterly he has lived in Tunbridge Wells, Kent.
The Court Gallery staged an important exhibition of Bryan Senior's early paintings from 1958-61 at Gallery 27, Cork Street, London 21st - 26th October 2013. A complimentary catalogue is available on request.
In May - June 2015 The Hampstead Museum held a retrospective of his work showing thirty-eight paintings from 1958 - 2006.
A short film of Bryan Senior - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YAz3CLWFqtY
From 3rd to 21st March, 2020, the Mall Galleries, London will be holding a major retrospective of his later work - People, Places and Things - 100 hundred paintings from 1980 to 2020, with a small group from the 1970s.