Sandy Nairne up close with Chuck

Sandy Nairne up close with Chuck

Sandy Nairne by Chuck Close, 2015 © Chuck Close/National Portrait Gallery, London

The National Portrait Gallery in London has done the double by acquiring the first major work by the US artist Chuck Close to enter a US public collection (the piece just so happens to depict the NPG’s illustrious former director Sandy Nairne who was at the helm from 2002 to 2015). Close’s six-foot tall, watercolour print portrait of Nairne is based on a large-format colour Polaroid photograph taken in the 20×24 Studio in New York. “The artist has had a relationship with Nairne dating back to the gallery’s Self-portrait: Renaissance to Contemporary exhibition in 2005 when Close’s self-portrait was displayed at the entrance to the exhibition in the Ondaatje Wing Main Hall,” a press statement says. Nairne says: “It is an honour to be portrayed by Chuck Close for the National Portrait Gallery in a way that is bold and intriguing.”

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