A portrait can be a public statement of a long-term vision, a commitment to heritage and an inspiration for the next generation
All this in addition to a being a work of art which captures the essence of a person.
A portrait can be a statement of artistic culture and long-term vision
Take for example the University of Hertfordshire which attained university status only in 1992. The university commissioned a portrait of Sir Tim Wilson DL, Emeritus Professor as Vice Chancellor by Brendan Kelly. Whilst the portrait was the first that Hertfordshire had commissioned, this university is ambitious when it comes to building its cultural resources and for its future. The portrait was seen as a public statement of a young university projecting a long history. As Chris McIntyre, the Dean of Cultural Affairs at the University of Hertfordshire who oversaw the portrait commission, explained ‘we’re at the point where we can start that history’. It joins an art collection of some 450 works reflecting the University’s commitment to culture.
A portrait can reflect heritage and brand values
The painting commissioned of Robert Geering reflects their philosophy of ‘A lasting legacy’ a ‘we are in it for the long haul’ customer service ethos’ according to their director, William Geering.A portrait is often part of a long history. The artist they chose was Andrew Festing who has an MBE for services to portraiture and is a past president of the Royal Society of Portrait Painters.
A portrait can celebrate success and be a gift of thanks
An institution which commissions portraits of the people who make it great will also inspire others to greatness.
Many businesses, colleges and universities celebrate success this way. As a token of gratitude to the sitter is often commissioned at the same time – a gift of a portrait sketch for example which is made as part of the process as happened with the portrait of Professor Shitij by Paul Brason.
Unilever, for example, commission portraits of each of their three Chairmen, and they too give the sitter a sketch as part of the commission. This tradition has lead the creation of a very interesting collection.
See more about Paul Brason’s portrait and leaving gift for Professor Kapur
See more about The Royal Society of Portrait Painters’ Commissions Service
Contact us for guidance for a portrait commission