Saied Dai RP NEAC (born 1958)

Saied Dai was born in Iran and came to England at the age of six. He trained at Bournemouth and Poole College of Art and Design and later at the Royal Academy Schools under luminaries such as Peter Greenham RA and Norman Blamey RA. Here the diverse and demanding disciplines, all grounded in drawing and structure, left an indelible mark. Saied was so highly regarded he was invited back to the Royal Academy Schools to teach under Leonard McComb’s keepership. He was elected to the Royal Society of Portrait Painters in 2004 and has won several awards, the most recent of which were The Ondaatje Prize in 2021 and 2006 as well as The William Lock Portrait Prize in 2023, for the most timeless portrait with a feeling for paint and its aesthetic potential. He also recently completed a portrait of The Rt Hon Theresa May MP for the Houses of Parliament.

“The motivation and attitude of an artist can best be determined, not so much by their subject­-matter, but how that subject is interpreted. The vehicle is important but should not be mistaken for the destination. Varying approaches and themes are the culmination and inadvertent diary of what has ‘caught’ me in the last couple of years. A closer look will reveal the connecting thread of focus, intention and resultant atmosphere that connects them all. Art really does come out of life. All ideas are founded on observation, for without obser­vation there would be no content. Some are painted directly from the subject, others mostly from drawings; whilst a number are based on an idea, or even derived from imagination. Often it is a mixture of all these elements together, aiming to create a self-­contained world that comes back to the reality with greater force and expression a mystery and hopefully an enigmatic beauty.” - Saied Dai

Saied Dai



Saied Dai



Saied Dai

Figure in a Doorway