Annie Lennox portrait unveiled at Glasgow university
The painting of the singer-songwriter, by Gerard Burns, was commissioned by Glasgow Caledonian University, where she holds the role of chancellor.
A portrait of Scots singer-songwriter Annie Lennox has been unveiled at Glasgow Caledonian University (GCU).
Scottish artist Gerard Burns was commissioned by GCU to create the painting of the 64-year-old, who is the chancellor of the university, starting on the work last autumn.
The picture, which was completed in March, depicts Ms Lennox in the chancellor’s robes, with the university’s motto (For the Common Weal) across the top in gold lettering in Latin, Gaelic and Scots.
On seeing the painting for the first time, alongside Mr Burns, staff, students and specially invited guests, Ms Lennox said she was “honoured” to have had the work commissioned.
“As chancellor of GCU, I’m honoured to be included in the tradition of having my portrait painted,” she said.
“Scots artist Gerard Burns has done a stalwart job and I’m delighted to be back in Glasgow to graduate the amazing students, who’ve all worked so hard to reach their goals.”
Mr Burns admitted that he was “star-struck” when he met the singer and social-activist to discuss the portrait.
“I was pretty star-struck meeting Annie Lennox, and I have to admit It took me a wee bit of time to catch my breath and get my head around photographing Annie Lennox the icon and, more importantly, getting to know ‘Annie’ the person,” he said.
“Painting someone so iconic brings its own pressures and challenges. I have always admired Annie for her formidable talent and the incredible characters she created for her visually extravagant videos.
“I find her work quite inspirational. She is, of course, also a brilliant musician and an amazing woman in every sense of the word. I can only hope I’ve done her justice!”
Mr Burns said he tried to capture the “real essence, defining quality” of Ms Lennox.
He added: “With Annie, she is as physically striking as her character and creativity, and you can see the depth and detailed consideration she has, within her and all that she does.”
Professor Pamela Gillies, vice-chancellor of GCU, said: “We are deeply privileged to have as our chancellor someone so widely recognised for their leadership in advancing humanitarian causes across the world.
“The painting will act as a beacon of the moral compass, strategic direction and social impact of our university for the common good.”