Friday, 1 June 2018

Last fall I received a commission from the RP (Royal Society of Portrait Painters) in the UK: a portrait of Canada's Minister of Foreign Affairs, Chrystia Freeland, for Rhodes House in Oxford. The portrait is now hanging above the Head Table in Milner Hall, alongside Nelson Mandela, Cecil Rhodes, and the Second Century founders. I am delighted and honoured to share these photos of the painting as I photographed it, and as it now looks in its frame at Rhodes House.

The Honourable Chrystia Freeland
Minister of Foreign Affairs
oil on Belgian linen, 40 x 30"

The Honourable Chrystia Freeland
Minister of Foreign Affairs (detail)

The portrait hanging at Rhodes House

Milner Hall, Rhodes House, Oxford, UK

Thursday, 26 October 2017

Kingston Prize, People's Choice Award

I am thrilled that The Bookseller (see my post from February 3, 2017) has won the $1,000 People's Choice Award at the first of three exhibitions of the Kingston Prize, Canada's national portrait competition. The show closed last week in Gananoque and will reopen on November 4 at the Peel Art Gallery, Museum and Archives in Brampton, Ontario.  The show will close there on January 8, 2018.

The Kingston Prize will then move to Artport Gallery,  Harbourfront Centre, Toronto, on February 2, 2018, where it will be on display until April 22.

Tuesday, 28 February 2017

The RP

I'm delighted to have had two works selected for the Royal Society of Portrait Painters' Annual Exhibition 2017 at the Mall Galleries in London, UK. They are Reliquary: Five Members of the International Midnight Painters' Society and The Four of Us (see my previous posts). To read more about the RP, please click here.

I'm extremely grateful to my friends and colleagues for their continued and enthusiastic support.

Friday, 3 February 2017

The Bookseller
Egg tempera on Claybord in a handmade frame
20 x 16" (excluding frame)


Wednesday, 28 December 2016

The Thomson Brothers
acrylic on muslin laid on cradled birch panel
40 x 30"

Tuesday, 31 May 2016

A Self-Portrait

The Four of Us
Graphite and Conservator's Wax on Claybord
20 x 16"

Reliquary: Five Members of the International Midnight Painters' Society

Five Members of the International Midnight Painters' Society
Mixed Media: egg tempera on five panels, 11" high each;
donated objects;
gilded frame made of wood, lace, gesso and clear acrylic
17.6 x 28.5 x 3.6"

More than a year ago, my friend and fellow portrait artist, Teri Anne Scoble, and I decided to form a society for artists who paint late into the night. Through Twitter, we soon gathered together a band of fellow all-hours painters, called ourselves the International Midnight Painters' Society (IMPS), and began the delightful and affirming habit of discussing our work, our technical issues, and anything at all that made us laugh. Suddenly I wasn't alone in my studio. I was surrounded by other artists, many of whom live in places I've never visited.

But the relationship is not merely digital.  Many of us have met in person, and when I was in the UK last fall, I was inspired to create a portrait of five of them. This is the result. It is a reliquary, based on the kind of gilded box that, half a millennium ago, would have held the finger bone of a saint or a piece of a sacred shroud. This reliquary, however, contains the relics of the process of art making.

From left to right, the subjects are Kate Brinkworth, whose relics are pencil shavings, drawing tacks, her grandmother's paint brush, and a fragment of paper from a blending stump; Helen O'Sullivan Tyrrell, whose relic is a piece of her painting apron; Teri Anne Scoble, whose relics are a glitter-smeared brush, a bit of swan's down, a ballet slipper charm, and a tube of watercolour; Gabby Roberts-Dalton, whose relic is a jam jar full of paint medium; and Isobel Peachey, whose relics are a scrap of canvas with colour test marks and a plait of cotton canvas thread.

These are all artists who have made a huge difference in how I see my own work and, perhaps more importantly, where I see myself in the world of artists. I will be forever grateful for their presence in my life.

Reliquary (detail of individual panels)