by Stuart Pearson Wright
oil on board construction with coloured pencil on paper, 2005
38 1/4 in. x 28 3/8 in. (972 mm x 720 mm)
Commissioned as part of the First Prize, BP Portrait Award, 2001, 2005
Click on the links below to find out more:
Artistback to top
- Stuart Pearson Wright (1975-), Artist. Artist of 31 portraits, Sitter in 1 portrait.
This portraitback to top
The artist began this portrait of J. K. Rowling in early 2004, when he paid several visits to the writer's Scottish home. Pearson Wright observed his subject, made sketches, sometimes while the author was at work, and took photographs for reference. Rowling is seated at a table, suggestive of the setting where the author famously wrote her first novel and where she occasionally still writes. The narrative alludes to Rowling's public and private self both as a writer, who has made an enormous impact on children's imaginations the world over, and as a mother - the eggs represent her own three children. Rowling's other worldly youthful presence in a surreal and disconcertingly distorted space calls to mind another children's classic, Alice in Wonderland. The painted sky beyond the window suggests a passage of time and illusionism that resonates with the Potter stories. In creating a three dimensional scene the artist has been influenced by eighteenth-century toy theatres and the boxes of Joseph Cornell.
Linked publicationsback to top
- I-Spy National Portrait Gallery, 2010, p. 58
- Cooper, John, A Guide to the National Portrait Gallery, 2009, p. 59
- Howgate, Sarah; Nairne, Sandy, A Guide to Contemporary Portraits, 2009, p. 36
- Nairne, Sandy (introduction), 500 Portraits: BP Portrait Award, 2011, p. 26
- Nairne, Sandy; Howgate, Sarah, The Portrait Now, 2006, p. 99
- Various contributors, National Portrait Gallery: A Portrait of Britain, 2014, p. 270
Subjects & Themesback to top
Events of 2005back to top
Current affairsLondon suffers its worst bomb attack since the Second World War when four devises are detonated during rush hour on public transport. Three of the bombs went off on tube trains, and one on a bus killing 56 people and injuring 700. A Leeds-based terror cell of British born or raised Islamic extremists committed the attacks.John Sentamu becomes the first black Archbishop of the Church of England.
Art and scienceAs part of the international Make Poverty History campaign, ten Live 8 concerts are held simultaneously around the world to coincide with the meeting of the G8 and persuade the world's richest countries to 'drop the debt' owed by the world's poorest countries, increase aid to the world's poorest people and negotiate fairer international trade rules.
International1,836 die in America as a result of Hurricane Katrina and the subsequent flooding. The hurricane was the most costly in US history and one of the most deadly. It caused the levees of Lake Pontchartrain to break, which flooded 80% of New Orleans. About one million people evacuated the city while 25,000 stayed behind, many taking refuge in the city's Superdome.
See this portrait
On display in Room 36 at the National Portrait Gallery
Buy a print
Related shop items
- A Guide to Contemporary Portraits
- Home on the Range Mounted Print
- Rose Marie Mounted Print
- Teardrops in my Heart Mounted Print
- Teardrops Can Never Drown the Flame Mounted Print
- Thank you for the Music Mounted Print
- Together in Electric Dreams Mounted Print
- Woman Surprised by Werewolf Mounted Print
- Alas Poor Yorick Mounted Print
- National Portrait Gallery: A Portrait of Britain
- The British Face DVD