The Power of Portraiture


One of the best years of my long, long life was 1971. I resigned from teaching, took out my accumulated pension, and immersed myself in the cultural bath that was London, England. During that year, one of my favourite galleries to visit was the National Portrait Gallery. Room after room was filled with the portraits of the historically important British people. The portraits were selected based solely on this historical importance and NOT on the artistic merits of the painters. In 1969, it had been decided that one didn’t have to be dead to be in the National Portrait Gallery. My many hours spent staring at these portraits influenced my early art buying and I began to build my own mini National Portrait Gallery. More experienced collectors told me that portraits have reduced resale value because what makes an interesting face is a quite idiosyncratic decision. Some of my earliest purchases were portraits done by one of my favourite painters, Dan Hughes. Dan is a technically accomplished painter whose portraits convey fascinating backstories and invite viewer engagement. Although Dan continues to expand his range of expression, it is still those early portraits that claim my affection. Dan is now represented by Ingram Gallery where you can enjoy his more recent work.

If you have any questions about these portraits, please contact me.

Photos and post: TOM MAUNDER

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