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Sandy Nairne Biography

Sandy Nairne CBE FSA - Writer, Curator, Former Director of the National Portrait Gallery


Sandy Nairne is a writer and curator based in London, and until 2015 was Director of the National Portrait Gallery. He has previously worked at the Institute of Contemporary Arts, the Arts Council and as Director of Programmes at Tate.

His publications include State of the Art, 1987, the anthology Thinking about Exhibitions, 1996, The 21st Century Portrait, Art Theft and the Case of the Stolen Turners, 2011, and The Coincidence of Novembers, 2020. His co-authored biography of Lord Desborough, Titan of the Thames, is now in press.

He is Deputy Chair of the National Trust, Chair of the Fabric Advisory Committee at St Paul’s Cathedral and of the Maggie’s Art Group for Maggie’s cancer care centres. He is also Deputy Chair of the Seafarers Hospital Society and a member of the Bank of England Banknote Character Advisory Committee.

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