British painter, born in Cambridge. She studied at Glasgow School of Art, graduating in 1992. She was patronized early in her career by Charles Saatchi, who commissioned fifteen paintings after seeing her work in London and showed them in his gallery in 1994. Her paintings were also included in the *‘Sensation’ exhibition (1997). Her characteristic subject is the female nude, nearly always Rubenesque in proportion and presented in extreme close-up, with special attention paid to the colouring of the flesh. Alison Roberts has written: ‘her feminism lies in a clear-eyed and unromantic view of the average female form – undistorted by sexual desire or notions of idealised femininity’ (The Guardian, 20 April 2003). Saville has also made work in collaboration with the photographer Glen Luchford, depicting her own body pressed against glass. She now lives in Palermo, where, as she told an interviewer in 2007, she has found the local meat market provides subjects even more enticing than the people.
S. Greenberg, ‘Out to Lunch: Jenny Saville R.A.’, R.A. Magazine (winter 2007)