Paul Huxley was born in London in 1938.  He first studied at Harrow School of Art and then at the age of seventeen, he was admitted to the Royal Academy Schools where he graduated in 1960.

In 1964 he was selected by Bryan Robertson for ‘The New Generation’ at the Whitechapel Art Gallery, the exhibition that first introduced emerging artists of the sixties to a wider public.  Works in this show from Huxley’s ‘fluid series’ of paintings became highly influential within the genre of new abstract painting at the time and won him an award that took him to the USA where he met many of the leading American artists of the period such as Mark Rothko, Barnett Newman, Robert Motherwell, Lee Krasner, Helen Frankenthaler and Jasper Johns, often visiting their studios and in some cases forming lasting friendships.

In 1965 he was awarded a Harkness Fellowship that extended his residency in New York for a further two years culminating in his first solo show there.  During this time he made the initial studies for his ‘key series’, works in which he deconstructed the traditional monocentric format of current abstract painting.  These were seminal to the development of the divided canvases that have largely characterised his work ever since.

The ‘studio series’ reintroduced the theme of the standing form that had previously been a feature in works of the late sixties and now was continued in subsequent paintings, for instance in the Modus Operandi series of the late 1980s and the Anima Animus series of the 1990s, where Huxley presented the concept of interactions between differing hypothetical renderings of image, flat colour field, line, chiaroscuro and collage. 

Huxley has also taught in art schools throughout his career and has contributed to policy in the academic and curatorial fields.  He was a member of the advisory panel for the Serpentine Gallery, a Trustee of the Tate Gallery, acting for a period as chairman of its Exhibitions Committee.

He was Professor of Painting at the Royal College of Art from 1986 until 1998 after which he was elected Honorary Fellow and Professor Emeritus.  Many of his students from these years such as Dinos Chapman, Nigel Cook, Dexter Dalwood, Andrew Grassie, Tracey Emin, Chantal Joffe and Chris Ofili are now established artists contributing to the new British art which has been so widely acclaimed.

In 1987 he was editor of ‘Exhibition Road - Painters from the Royal College of Art’, a book to coincide with the exhibition of the same title, which he co-curated with Susie Allen.  For their joint work on this show the National Art Collections Fund (now The Art Fund) gave them an award for Outstanding Service to the Arts. He has been a Royal Academician since 1987 acting as their Treasurer for fourteen years.

 Over the last four decades Huxley's work has been shown in numerous solo and group exhibitions both in the UK and internationally.  Recent projects have included a series of steel sculptures and large-scale wall drawings including in the Azerbaijan International Pavilion for the 56th Venice Biennale.  In 2016 the Mark Rothko Centre in Latvia held a retrospective of his work.