About Our Team

Who we are

Fine Art Commissions is dedicated to providing a helpful, informative and, above all, personal service and we are on hand at every stage of the process. Our combined knowledge and experience ensures that we are best placed to assist with whatever is needed for your bespoke work of art.

Sara Stewart

Founder & Managing Director

Sara established Fine Art Commissions in 1997. She responded to the market demand for a figurative agency after working with contemporary artists while a director of the Malcolm Innes Gallery.

The agency moved to a ground floor gallery in Knightsbridge and in 2003 she and Oliver Swann of The Tryon Swann Gallery founded the Arndean Gallery in Cork Street. Used as a temporary exhibition space available for artists and dealers without representation, the ascent of Fine Art Commissions meant the gallery was used as an additional exhibition space to support our artists. From an office above the tube line in Walton Street, to our home at 19 Ryder Street, via Bury and then Duke Street, Fine Art Commissions has succeeded in ensuring portrait commissions remain firmly in fashion.

Six months after founding FAC, Sara unearthed press cuttings about a portrait commissioning agency established by Lady Cochrane who owned a contemporary gallery in Knightsbridge in the 30’s. It was a novel idea which opened to press acclaim. The next time the press showed an interest in a private commissioning agency was when Fine Art Commissions was founded over seventy years later. Sara had been aware of the existence of the Knightsbridge gallery, but not the portrait agency. Hilda Cochrane was her grandmother.

“I meet so many fascinating artists and clients and have had the greatest of fun over the last 25 years. I look forward to continuing to provide dozens of talented people with interesting faces to paint and stories to hear.”


Sam Parker Bowles

Associate Director

A specialist in portraiture, Sam took his History of Art degree to The National Gallery of Victoria in Australia, where he conceived media strategies for several blockbuster exhibitions. On his return he spent seven years planning and delivering numerous exhibitions and high-end sales for Dickinson, the specialist Old Master and Impressionist art dealership in St. James’s.

Sam’s experience as Head of Logistics for the Fine Art Society on Bond Street further prepared him to join Fine Art Commissions in June 2019. As Associate Director, Sam liaises between artist and client as well as managing our exhibition schedule.

“I am driven and excited by our artists’ talent, and the variety of our commissions. The future of the art world is important, and I strive to ensure that portraiture continues to inspire the next generation.”


Emma Burton

Emma Burton

Gallery Administrator

Emma joined Fine Art Commissions as Gallery Administrator in early 2022, having graduated with Distinction with Honours from Oxford Media & Business School. Combining her valuable experiences within the creative industry and a long standing appreciation of the arts, Emma is very well placed to oversee the day to day running of the gallery as well as leading the business’ marketing strategies.

“It is hugely inspiring being surrounded by such a diverse range of artistic styles and practises and to witness first-hand the fascinating process of portraiture by some of the greatest artists working today.”


We love the portrait…The whole process has been so enjoyable and easy and we have you all to thank for that.

Sunningdale School

Get in touch

Fine Art Commissions is located on Ryder Street, St James’s, in the heart of the art world of London. Just up the road from Christie’s, and nestled in amongst a number of established art institutions, our gallery is well worth a visit.

Fine Art Commissions - Established 1997