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In Conversation: BP Portrait Award at 30

18 October 2019, 19:00

Ondaatje Wing Theatre

Tickets: £10 (£8 concessions and Gallery Supporters) Book online, or visit the Gallery in person.

Imara in her Fur Coat by Charlie Schaffer © Charlie Schaffer

Imara In Her Winter Coat
by Charlie Schaffer
© Charlie Schaffer


To mark the 30th anniversary of the BP Portrait Award, Chief Curator Alison Smith talks to past winners, James Lloyd and Ishbel Myerscough, and this year's winner, Charlie Schaffer.

Ishbel Myesrcough studied at Glasgow and the Slade Schools of Art; she won the National Portrait Gallery's annual BP Portrait Award competition in 1995 and as a result was commissioned to paint Helen Mirren's portrait for the Collection and subsequently Sir Willard White.

James Lloyd graduated in the 90s with an MA from the Slade School of Fine Art, following a BA in Fine Art from Coventry and a Diploma from Blackpool College of Art and Design. He won the BP Portrait Award in 1997 and as a result was commissioned to paint fashion designer Sir Paul Smith for the Collection and subsequently Dame Maggie Smith.

Charlie Schaffer undertook a BA in Fine Art: Painting at the University of Brighton. His work has been seen in a number of group exhibitions including the Lynn Painter-Stainers Prize (2014, 2016, 2018, 2019), where he won the Brian Botting Prize for an outstanding representation of the human figure on three occasions, the Royal Society of Portrait Painters (2015, 2016, 2017) and the Sky Arts Portrait Artist of the Year (2014, 2016, 2017) and a solo exhibition in London. His portrait Imara in her Winter Coat won the BP Portrait Award 2019.

Alison Smith joined the National Portrait Gallery in 2017 as Chief Curator. Prior to that she was lead curator of 19th-century British art at Tate Britain where her exhibitions included Exposed: The Victorian Nude (2001), Millais (2007), Watercolour (2011), Artist and Empire (2015) and Edward Burne-Jones (2018-19), the first major survey of the artist’s work to be held in London for over forty years. In 2017 she curated Reflections: Van Eyck and the Pre-Raphaelites at the National Gallery, London which explored the influence of Van Eyck’s Arnolfini Portrait (1434) on the young painters of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood.

Part of the programme of events complementing the BP Portrait Award 2019.

Priority booking for Gallery Members is open now. Public booking will open on Thursday 8 August 2019.

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