The core of the show is made by members of the RSPP but every year about 100 pieces are selected from open submission. This year I have entered a painting and a monotype and they were both selected.
I was very excited that the small (10x10cm) monotype "Study for the Queen of Sheba" was chosen. Monotypes are a fairly recent endeavour of mine and although I have been showing them already at art fairs this is the first time that they are included in an important show.
This small portrait of Fre' is one of about twelve monotypes I made of the same subject and size, and the only one that did not end up in the bin. Although the execution of a monotype is rather quick, the risk of failure is high, particularly in such small works. Not that this one is perfect but it's the best I could do.
I like making monotypes based on my own paintings, it takes the pressure off "finding a subject" and viewing the work at a different scale and in reverse helps me understand much more about the painting itself.
The oil painting that will be on display is from a "portrade": I sat for Daniel Shadbolt for a few sessions last January and in turn he came to my studio three times. He just sat as he was, with his jacket still on.
Half way through the sittings I decided to include in the background one of his paintings which I own and love, an urban garden with a lonely chair and a shed ( that " looks back", in Daniel's words).
A few weeks ago at the National Gallery I spotted this painting by Moroni that I had always overlooked: an uncanny resemblance !
The Royal Society of Portrait Painters Annual show is open from the 8th to the 23rd of May at Mall Galleries.