Sadie Lee is an award-winning British figurative painter. Her challenging paintings focus on a range of subjects, including the representation of women in art, sexuality, gender and the aging body. She has been selected to show work in many group shows including exhibitions at The I.C.A. and Museum of London. Solo shows include exhibitions at the National Portrait Gallery (London), Manchester City Art Gallery, Schwules Museum (Berlin) and Museum of Modern Art (Slovenia).
She is perhaps best known for her 1997 solo exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery ‘A Dying Art: Ladies of the Burlesque’ which was a result of winning the BP Travel Award. For the exhibition, she met and painted fifteen former American Burlesque dancers, now elderly and retired, in costumes that reflected their past.
In 2007 she made And then He was a She, a collection of paintings of legendary drag queen, Holly Woodlawn, immortalised in Lou Reed’s infamous song Walk on the Wild Side.
Sadie Lee has lectured on her paintings at institutions including The National Portrait Gallery London, Manchester City Gallery, Tate Modern, the Victoria and Albert Museum and Walker Gallery, Liverpool. Since 1998 she has worked as a freelance art educator at the National Portrait Gallery, London and regularly teaches life drawing at The Wallace Collection.
Sadie Lee’s paintings are in private collections including those of television presenter and historian Dr David Starkey, Oscar-winning costume designer Sandie Powell, Hugh Cornwell – lead singer of seminal Punk band The Stranglers and the renowned American collector Candice B. Groot.