Despite being born in Evanston, Illinois, Charles was raised in Kent, and upon leaving school obtained a place at the Maidstone College of Art. From there, he studied painting at the Royal Academy in London from 1989 – 1992, winning an RA Schools prize in his final year.
An artist with his own particular take on figurative painting, Charles is a member of the Stuckist movement, which aims to openly challenge the validity of “conceptual art” to be considered as a form of art in itself. As a member of the Stuckists, he was a joint winner of the Real Turner Prize in 2002 (created in opposition to the nature of the Turner Prize).
A member of the New English Art Club, Charles regularly exhibits at the Mall Galleries, London. He exhibits at the Royal Academy and has been widely exhibited in both the UK, mainland Europe and the US. Notable other exhibitions include a solo show at The Walker Gallery and The Lady Lever Gallery, Liverpool.