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Friday 14 December 2018

Hansard's new album is picture perfect

Musician Glen Hansard standing in front of 'Thread of Light', the portrait of him painted by Belfast artist Colin Davidson
Musician Glen Hansard standing in front of 'Thread of Light', the portrait of him painted by Belfast artist Colin Davidson

Ken Sweeney Entertainment Editor

IT's a safe bet that Glen Hansard is pleased with the results of his sitting for painter Colin Davidson.

The Belfast artist made the finals of the UK's prestigious BP Annual Portrait Awards last year with his study of the 'Once' star, which later went on display at London's National Portrait Gallery.

And now Mr Hansard has decided to use the image for the cover of his debut solo album 'Rhythm and Repose', due out on June 15.

"I've loved Glen's work for 20 years -- so it was a huge honour to get the call from him to ask if he could use my picture for his album sleeve. But it's probably Glen doing me a big favour because his profile is so big in the US right now," Mr Davidson told the Irish Independent.

The oil-on-linen work 'Thread of Light' was completed last year after an introduction by a mutual friend, Belfast singer Duke Special.

"When Glen came to my studio for the sitting, we listened to some CDs together," said Mr Davidson.

"I didn't want it to be very formal. I'm much more interested in something totally unposed where the subject forgets that I'm there. That's how you capture who people truly are."

'Rhythm and Repose' is Mr Hansard's first album of new material since The Swell Season's 2009 release 'Strict Joy'. His former partner Marketa Irglova provides some vocals for the new work.

Mr Davidson's portraits can be seen as part of the 181st Annual Exhibition at the Royal Hibernian Academy, Ely Place, Dublin, until July 30.

Irish Independent

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