Anthony Whishaw studied at Chelsea College of Art between 1948 and 1952 afterwards winning a Royal College of Art Travelling Scholarship from 1952 to 1955. He has taught part time on various occasions at Chelsea School of Art and St Martins between 1958 and 1992. He has won several prizes and awards during his prolific career including an Arts Council of Great Britain Award in 1978 and the John Moores Minor Painting Prize in 1982. He was joint winner in the Hunting Group National Art Competition in 1986 and in 1996 won the Korn Ferry Carre Oban International Picture of the Year. He is also a member of the Royal Academy and has exhibited in the Summer Exhibitions every year since 1972.
He has exhibited in numerous solo and group exhibitions in the UK and abroad. Roland, Browse and Delbanco in 1963, 1965 and 1968, Kettles Yard in 1982-83, the Mappin Art Gallery, Sheffield, in 1985 . In 1986 and 1987 he had two solo shows at the Royal Academy, one of 'Large Landscapes' the other entitled ' Reflections After Las Meninas'. The John Hansard Gallery, Southampton, had a one man show of his work in 1988 and his most recent solo exhibition entitled 'Trees', was at the Stephen Lacey Gallery, London in 2000. A catalogue accompanied the show.
In 1988 his work was part of a major exhibition 'The Romantic Tradition in Contemporary British Painting' which toured France and Spain. His work is included in prestigious private and public collections worldwide such as the Arts Council of Great Britain, Deutsche Morgan Grenfell, the European Parliament, Strasbourg, the National Gallery of Victoria, Melbourne, Australia, the National Westminster Bank, the Tate Gallery and The Bank of Boston, amongst several others.
Considering influences that have shaped his work, he names Goya, Velasquez, Permeke, Picasso, Tapies, Magritte, Cezanne, Cubism, American Abstract Expressionism, Piero della Francesca and illusion, allusion, perception, irony, texture and paradox as having all played their part.