Poetry By Heart, July 2014

Check out this vibrant site which has a marvellous catalogue of poets on their timeline:

http://www.poetrybyheart.org.uk/anthology/


New Exhibition at National Portrait Gallery: 18 by 12 - 9th February 2011

New Exhibition at National Portrait Gallery: 18 by 12, opening 9th February 2011

Eighteen by Twelve, Recent Photographic Acquisitions - News Release from the NPG

4 February 2011 NEW PORTRAIT OF THE PRINCES AT NATIONAL PORTRAIT GALLERY ALONGSIDE RONNIE CORBETT, TRACEY EMIN, M.I.A. AND BRIAN COX A previously unseen portrait of Prince William and Prince Harry by Fergus Greer and a portrait of Tracey Emin by David Bailey will form part of a new display highlighting the photographs recently acquired by the National Portrait Gallery. Eighteen by Twelve: Recent Photographic Acquisitions from 7 February 2011 in Room 41a will show eighteen sitters by twelve contemporary photographers, all on display for the first time at the Gallery. Every year the National Portrait Gallery acquires a diverse selection of photographic portraits which offer a visual reflection of contemporary British life and culture. The sitters in this display include recent portraits of popular scientist Brian Cox, poet Christopher Reid, actors Benedict Cumberbatch, Andy Serkis and Mackenzie Crook, and singer songwriter K T Tunstall. The display will also include contemporary singer M.I.A, Poet Laureate Carol Ann Duffy, newspaper executive Rebekah Wade, comedian Ronnie Corbett, artist Frank Auerbach, and film director Terence Davies. The photographers represented range from established portrait photographers such as David Bailey and Fergus Greer to photographers whose works are represented in the Collection for the first time such as Kate Peters, Debra Hurford Brown, Richard Saker, Stuart Walker and Spencer Murphy. Seen in the display for the first time is an informal double portrait of Princes William and Harry taken at The Commandants House at the Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst. Photographer Fergus Greer was commissioned by Clarence House to take the portrait in December 2006 in preparation for the Concert for Diana in 2007, but the photograph was not published. The portrait is only the second double portrait of the two Princes to enter the Gallery’s Collection, the first a formal commissioned portrait by artist Nicky Philipps unveiled in 2010. The Photographs collection consists of more than 220,000 original photographic images dating from the 1840s to the present day. Founded in 1856, the aim of the National Portrait Gallery is to collect portraits of famous men and women who have made and are making British history and culture. Other recent photographic acquisitions can be explored through the New Portraits page of the Gallery’s website www.npg.org.uk Notes for Editors: ◦The portraits included in the display are: Andy Serkis by Spencer Murphy, 2009 Benedict Cumberbatch by Spencer Murphy, 2010 Brian Cox by Paul Wolfgang Webster, 7 July 2009 Carol Ann Duffy by Peter Everard Smith, August 2005 Christopher Reid by Jemimah Kuhfeld, April 2009 Frank Auerbach by Stuart Walker, 29 November 2007 Jane Goldman by Richard Saker, 4 March 2010 K T Tunstall by Kate Peters, 12 September 2010 Lee Evans by Debra Hurford Brown, 1998 M.I.A by Neil Gavin, March 2005 Paul Mackenzie Crook by Richard Cannon, 27 March 2009 Prince William of Wales; Prince Henry of Wales by Fergus Greer, December 2006 Rebekah Wade by Fergus Greer, March 2007 Ronnie Corbett by Debra Hurford Brown, 2006 Stephen Merchant by Spencer Murphy, 2010 Terence Davies by Richard Cannon, 9 December 2008 Tracey Emin by David Bailey, 2007 For further press information and image requests please contact: Eleanor Macnair, Press Office, National Portrait Gallery Tel: 020 7321 6620 (not for publication) Email: emacnair@npg.org.uk; To download images: www.npg.org.uk/press The link is Here

4 February 2011

NEW PORTRAIT OF THE PRINCES AT NATIONAL PORTRAIT GALLERY ALONGSIDE RONNIE CORBETT, TRACEY EMIN, M.I.A. AND BRIAN COX

A previously unseen portrait of Prince William and Prince Harry by Fergus Greer and a portrait of Tracey Emin by David Bailey will form part of a new display highlighting the photographs recently acquired by the National Portrait Gallery. Eighteen by Twelve: Recent Photographic Acquisitions from 7 February 2011 in Room 41a will show eighteen sitters by twelve contemporary photographers, all on display for the first time at the Gallery.

Every year the National Portrait Gallery acquires a diverse selection of photographic portraits which offer a visual reflection of contemporary British life and culture. The sitters in this display include recent portraits of popular scientist Brian Cox, poet Christopher Reid, actors Benedict Cumberbatch, Andy Serkis and Mackenzie Crook, and singer songwriter K T Tunstall. The display will also include contemporary singer M.I.A, Poet Laureate Carol Ann Duffy, newspaper executive Rebekah Wade, comedian Ronnie Corbett, artist Frank Auerbach, and film director Terence Davies. The photographers represented range from established portrait photographers such as David Bailey and Fergus Greer to photographers whose works are represented in the Collection for the first time such as Kate Peters, Debra Hurford Brown, Richard Saker, Stuart Walker and Spencer Murphy.

Seen in the display for the first time is an informal double portrait of Princes William and Harry taken at The Commandants House at the Royal Military Academy, Sandhurst. Photographer Fergus Greer was commissioned by Clarence House to take the portrait in December 2006 in preparation for the Concert for Diana in 2007, but the photograph was not published. The portrait is only the second double portrait of the two Princes to enter the Gallery’s Collection, the first a formal commissioned portrait by artist Nicky Philipps unveiled in 2010.

The Photographs collection consists of more than 220,000 original photographic images dating from the 1840s to the present day. Founded in 1856, the aim of the National Portrait Gallery is to collect portraits of famous men and women who have made and are making British history and culture. Other recent photographic acquisitions can be explored through the New Portraits page of the Gallery’s website www.npg.org.uk

Notes for Editors:

◦The portraits included in the display are:

Andy Serkis by Spencer Murphy, 2009

Benedict Cumberbatch by Spencer Murphy, 2010

Brian Cox by Paul Wolfgang Webster, 7 July 2009

Carol Ann Duffy by Peter Everard Smith, August 2005

Christopher Reid by Jemimah Kuhfeld, April 2009

Frank Auerbach by Stuart Walker, 29 November 2007

Jane Goldman by Richard Saker, 4 March 2010

K T Tunstall by Kate Peters, 12 September 2010

Lee Evans by Debra Hurford Brown, 1998

M.I.A by Neil Gavin, March 2005

Paul Mackenzie Crook by Richard Cannon, 27 March 2009

Prince William of Wales; Prince Henry of Wales by Fergus Greer, December 2006

Rebekah Wade by Fergus Greer, March 2007

Ronnie Corbett by Debra Hurford Brown, 2006

Stephen Merchant by Spencer Murphy, 2010

Terence Davies by Richard Cannon, 9 December 2008

Tracey Emin by David Bailey, 2007

For further press information and image requests please contact: Eleanor Macnair, Press Office, National Portrait Gallery Tel: 020 7321 6620 (not for publication) Email: emacnair@npg.org.uk; To download images: www.npg.org.uk/press

The link is Here

The New York Times - September 2010

Seamus Heaney - Human Chain - in The New York Times

I was delighted to see my portrait of Seamus Heaney in The New York Times review of his new book Human Chain: Article here.


125th Anniversary Exhibition at Gallery 1885 - October 2010

125th Anniversary Exhibition at Gallery 1885

In these blustery days of changeable weather; dimming evenings and misty mornings, it would be easy to start to wind-down for Winter.  But just when I thought everything was easing up... my work has been selected to form part of an exclusive 125th Anniversary Exhibition at Gallery 1885, entitled 'Timeline.'

"Founded in 1885, The Camera Club is one of the oldest and most distinguished photographic societies in the World, and many notable figures in the history of photography have been members. The Camera Club owns its own London Clubhouse this enables it to offer the outstanding facilities to members, which many might otherwise find almost unavailable or unaffordable." 

Apparently I'll be in the company of some extremely notable photographers and only recently came to know what a very fine archive of images we have in the Club's possession.

It's also nice to note that it was once a men-only establishment!

Faber & Faber - September 2010

Christopher Reid - Faber & Faber

When I visited Christopher Reid at his London home I made a mental note that the lunch he provided was one of the best I'd ever been given.  For such a well-travelled person as he this was no surprise.  (I also found out later that he has written a book called 'The Song of Lunch').  He was altogether gracious and it struck me that the simple act of sharing your food with someone else, is actually symbolic of the way in which they treat one in general, and inclusive in many ways.

I was naturally delighted, then, when such a kind person as Christopher found such success this year with the  Costa Prize for 'A Scattering'.

I felt privileged at the time of my visit (some year or so before this award), to meet Christopher, and was proud to have taken his portrait for its own sake - rather than in the wake of the tidal waves of press which signalled his very-deserved win.  

Faber and Faber have now acquired my portrait of Christopher for their publicity archive:

Christopher Reid.jpg

For anyone interested in reading more about Christopher's poetry, may I direct you to the finely-analytical work of my old tutor Tim Kendall when he was Editor of Thumbscrew?

Also in an exciting turn of events 'The Song of Lunch' is set to be filmed and released on National Poetry Day 7th October 2010.  More information here.

More press for Christopher Reid involving my picture:

Cheltenham Festival 2010
Ledbury Festival 2010

National Portrait Gallery, London - 2010

National Portrait Gallery, London, acquires six portraits for national collection

It is always an honour to enter the hallowed halls of an old establishment, such as one of the wonderful galleries in London. To me (perhaps because of my up-bringing surrounded by artistes!) galleries take on the same hues as a Church. Those of reverence and awe.

I once had a memorable opportunity to enter the National Portrait Gallery out of hours, as assistant to a talented fine art photographer. We were documenting the vast collection of the gallery, much of which is housed off-site and then apparently rotated 'in' every so often. That day we had come to shoot some Hockney pencil and pen-and-ink drawings. They were really wonderful and I really enjoyed just staring at them while the photographer did the business of focussing, squaring up, testing, metering... (those were the old days of shooting on 5x4 inch neg when only one person could really be under the dark cloth at a time).

So it is with great pleasure that I heard the news that the NPG wished to buy 6 more of my poet portraits, bringing the total held in the collection to 12. 

The catalogue of my portraits held in the national collection are here.

The New York Times - April 11th 2010

Charles Bernstein - All The Whiskey In Heaven - The New York Times Review April 11th 2010

The first time I met Charles Bernstein we were in London and at the beautiful and private Penn Club in Bloomsbury.  It was a clement day and we got some great shots quite quickly.  I found him a very easy to talk to, humorous and open kind of character, and he was not as perturbed as some of my subjects by the lens. 

Charles Bernstein.jpg

Just as we were about to call it a day and head back to the Club, I spotted some dusty -admittedly rather dirty- corner of a London street with the odd pattern of brickwork which you see in the picture... and the simple regularity of the shapes seemed to fit with Bernstein's interest in puzzling over language, sorting and playing with it.  For want of a better word it clicked. 

When his new book, a collection of works past and present, was to appear, his publishers bought the shot.  I delightedly wish him every success with the book.