After studying at Goldsmiths College and the Royal College of Art, Bridget Riley had her first solo exhibition at London's Gallery One in 1962. She adopted her Op Art style in the 1960s under the influence of the Futurists, primarily Giacomo Balla and Umberto Boccioni. Her first paintings were executed in black and white and use geometric patterns to create the illusion of movement. She later incorporated colour in order to add depth and tone to her work. Her interests lie in the energy and colour vibrations radiated by objects.
Riley's international reputation was established in 1968 when she won the highest honour at the Venice Biennale. She was the first English contemporary painter and the first woman ever to achieve this distinction.