David Annesley was born in London in 1936 and educated in England, Australia and Zimbabwe. After national service as an RAF pilot (1956-58), he studied sculpture at Central St. Martin’s in 1962. Annesley also tutored at Croydon College of Art, Central St. Martin's College of Art and Design and the Royal College of Art from 1963 to 1995.

He was elected a fellow of the Royal Society of British sculptors in 1995. Annesley's first solo exhibition was held at the Waddington galleries in 1966, followed in the same year by a show at the Poindexter Gallery, New York. Since then he has had many solo shows in London, New York and Australia, Holland, Germany and the United States. His sculpture is in many public collections, including those of the Arts Council; the British council; Tate; the Museum of Modern Art, New York; the Nagoya Gallery, Japan; and the Gallery of New South Wales, Australia.