“Kylie” (2010) by Luci Metcalfe!

"Kylie" (2010) by Luci Metcalfe. Felt pen on paper.

This is my first foray into actually buying original artwork – it’s by my friend Luci Metcalfe, and it was a total bargain!  Luci is currently running a drawathon, where she produces a drawing each day for 26 days, and each one costs £26.  Although she also did a few caricatures, which were a bit quicker and a bit cheaper.  I loved this picture of Kylie when I saw it on her website, so I snapped it up.
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“Consider how the wildflowers grow…”

Sugarpaste roses and leaves.

Some more of my own work, and a slight change from portraits.  I recently had the privilege of making a wedding cake for my friends Lisa and Andy.  It’s not something I’d volunteer to do too often (I’m not sure my nerves would stand it), but I was pleased to be able to do it for them.
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Fourth Plinth Shortlist Announced

I love the Fourth Plinth in Trafalgar Square – I think it’s a great idea putting something contemporary and stimulating in a position where thousands can see it.  I’m a big fan of Yinka Shonibare’s Ship in a Bottle which is there at the moment (go see it!).

And now the Commissioning Group have announced the six proposals they’ve shortlisted to replace Ship in a Bottle when it’s replaced at the end of 2011.  See what you think…

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“Self” (2006) by Marc Quinn

"Self" (2006) by Marc Quinn. Frozen blood in refrigerated case.

Another “portrait” from the National Portrait Gallery – Self by Marc Quinn.  Quinn has built a reputation for producing controversial sculptures – his most public being his statue Alison Lapper Pregnant, depicting a disabled woman, which occupied Trafalgar Square’s fourth plinth for 2 years.  He also often uses unexpected materials in his work – Siren, his solid gold statue of Kate Moss generated a lot of interest, as much for its material value as for its artistic merit.

Self is both controversial and unusual in the materials it uses.  It’s a sculpture of Quinn’s own head, made from 4.5 litres of his own frozen blood.  The sculpture has to be kept frozen and encased in silicone to prevent deterioration.  The artist has described it as, “a frozen moment on life support.”  He first made the work in 1991, but makes a new one every 5 years.  The National Portrait Gallery bought this one in 2006 for £300,000.

What do you think?

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“Last Portrait of Mother” by Daphne Todd

"Last Portrait of Mother" by Daphne Todd. Oil on wooden panels 650 x920 x 50 mm

A few weeks ago my friend Sam and I went to see the BP Portrait Award Exhibition.  This portrait was the winner.

For lots of reasons, some of them obvious, I’ve since found myself thinking about this painting a lot.  It’s the kind of image that stays with you.  It’s shocking and disturbing, and it tackles a subject you don’t often see treated so bluntly.  And a cynic could look at the painting and assume that’s the reason it won – simple shock tactics.

But I think the reason I’ve thought about Last Portrait of Mother so much is that there’s so much going on…

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Hello world!

I thought I ought to kick off my art blog with some art of my own – it only seems fair to go public before I start talking about other people’s. So here are some sketches.  The first one was a practice sketch for a portrait of my friend Dave (I might feature the actual … Continue reading Hello world!