James Stourton

James Stourton is the award-winning author of twelve books including Great Houses of London, British Embassies and Kenneth Clark. He is a Senior Fellow of the Institute of Historical Research of London University. He started his career as an Old Master paintings specialist with Sotheby’s and rose to become UK Chairman. He stepped down from his position as UK Chairman in 2012. He writes regularly for The Times; Daily Telegraph; Independent; Spectator; Apollo; The Art Newspaper; and was Consultant to The Economist art collecting supplement. He is a frequent lecturer to Cambridge University History of Art Faculty; Sotheby’s Institute of Education; The Georgian Group and The Art Fund. James was also a contributor on Helen Rosslyn’s recent programme ‘Bought with Love: The Secret History of British Art Collections’ which aired earlier this year on BBC Four. James sat on several government committees including the Panel of the Heritage Memorial Fund and The Acceptance in Lieu Panel. He lives in Dorset.


  • The Dictionary of Art (Macmillan) contributor, 1996
  • Great Smaller Museums of Europe (2003). Translated into four languages, Danish, Chinese, French and Japanese
  • Great Collectors of Our Time: Art Collecting Since 1945 (October 2007), Apollo Book of the Year 2007
  • ‘Robert, 9th Lord Petre’ in English Catholic Heroes (Sept 2008)
  • Sponsor and publisher of The Lumley Inventory and Pedigree, Edited Mark Evans, 2010 for the Roxburghe Club
  • The British as Collectors: A History of British Art Collecting from the Tudors Until the Present, published by Scala in June 2012
  • The Great Houses of London, with photographs by Fritz von der Schulenburg, published by Frances Lincoln in October 2012
  • Kenneth Clark, published by William Collins in September 2016
  • British Embassies, published by Frances Lincoln in October 2017

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