She is a wonderful artist and has a portrait in this world-famous exhibition. Huge congratulations to her. Together with a couple of other artists we saw the show last night and had a wonderful time. This is the first year the BP Portrait Award is being held under the baton of new director of the National Portrait Gallery, Nicholas Cullinan, and it seems that he has started on a new course. The show is more varied than before and includes a lot more painterly portraits than we traditionally expect to see at the BP! Below are some of my favourites.
Overall the exhibition is very varied and it has portraits from very painterly and bold to hyper-realistic and everything in between. There are the more traditional Sargent-styled portraits, a Bouguereau inspired super-soft portrait, hyper-realism as well as Art Nouveau and even a painting of a mobile phone (a little joke from the judges?).
The Travel Award which was won by Magali Cazo last year, showed us a wonderful collection of small portraits and a harmonica ‘scrapbook’ (it was more beautiful that the word suggests) of an African foundry.
You must go and see the exhibition for yourself. It is always fun to wonder whether you would have chosen these as your favourites and whether you agree with the judges on the chosen winners. Endless and entertaining debates probably follow. That is part of the fun of the BP Portrait Award.
For some reason (too much chatting I suppose) I did not take photos of all my favourites. So if you ask me, do look out for Jamie Coreth (Young Artist Award winner), Diego Aznar (Insomnia), Lewis Chamberlain (Alice and the Planets), Saied Dai (The Enigma of Jasper Rose), Samantha Fellows (Pearl in the Morning, Ready for School), Mark Shields (A Ridiculous Man). Oh heck, they are all great!
These were some of my personal favourites. But I must add I really enjoyed the variety of the show.