Wednesday, 6 May 2009

Royal Society of Portrait Painters Annual Show 2009

I am just back from the opening of the show at the Mall Galleries which I found truly excellent. I must say that the quality improves each year round.

The opening was very crowded and all the big shots of the Society were there. It's also always fun when one recognizes faces from the portraits hanging on the wall.
What I like about the show is that there is an incredible variety of works. Some very traditional, some "freudy" some "slady" ( this is London portrait slang ), some hyper realist. This year there also were more drawings than ever, and excellent ones.

This is a view of the right hand side room. On the far wall the painting of King Abdullah of Jordan by Sergei Pavlenko, and a reclining nude by John Wonnacott.

The painting on the left is a stunning portrait by John Ward, who passed away in 2007.
Please excuse the glare in the photos.

Paintings by members and non members were equally stunning, this one is by a friend from art school, Yasunobu Shidami, whose work gets better and better each time I see it.

A portrait by Minna Stevens, who has been my very supportive tutor for two years.

The fully deserving winner of the Ondaatje prize for Portraiture was Anastasia Pollard with her Portrait of Valentina. I love everything she does, her subtle darks, her unusual models.

This is a detail of a portrait by Peter Kuhfield which I thought was incredibly delicately painted.

And now to yours truly: this is my little painting, done over one session. The model is a russian lady with a very intense expression.
Well the good news is that the painting sold straight away. I actually am pretty sure that it was the first painting to sell. There was a red dot just half an hour after the opening. It is hanging in one of the back rooms ( when am I ever going to make the large hall?) above the most beautiful etching by Stephen Teeuw which also sold just after mine.

I am planning more visits and more posts with links to my favourite exhibitors, so remember to come back ( or subscribe !)

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