Well-known figures contribute portraits for gallery fundraiser

Frederick Burnaby by Tissot, 1870 (chosen by Sir Max Hastings). Copyright National Portrait Gallery.

Frederick Burnaby by Tissot, 1870 (chosen by Sir Max Hastings). Copyright National Portrait Gallery.

LONDON – Well-known figures will either draw or “write” portraits for the National Portrait Gallery as it hosts a gala fundraising event on Tuesday, Feb. 11, sponsored by the fashion designer Leon Max, it was announced today.

Those attending the ticketed black-tie event, announced today, include David Bailey, Olympic Gold medalist Katherine Grainger, Grayson Perry, Marc Quinn, Jane Asher, Gerald Scarfe and Jonathan Yeo.

Marina Warner, Hilary Mantel, Esther Freud, Joanna Trollope, Sir David Hare, Sir Michael Holroyd and Dame Jacqueline Wilson are among those who have created hand-written pen portraits for the gala.

Inspired by portraits in the gallery’s collection, pen portraits, offered at £500, have also been written by Ben Okri, Sir Max Hastings, A.S. Byatt, Amanda Foreman, Sarah Singleton and Sir Roy Strong.

Mantel has chosen a portrait of Thomas Cromwell revisiting the subject of her award-winning novel Wolf Hall while Hare has opted for Oscar Wilde, also the subject of one of his works.

Richard E Grant, Grace Coddington, Sir Paul Smith, Maggi Hambling, Gok Wan, John Swannell and Alex Katz are some of the artists who have contributed Mystery Portrait Postcards. A special display of over 200 postcards, each card on sale at £250 on a first-come, first-served basis at the gala, will then remain open at the gallery for two days from Feb. 12 for visitors to buy.

Funds raised by the gala will support the gallery’s daily work of delivering inspirational exhibitions and displays, offering unique learning opportunities and undertaking world class research. Some proceeds will go towards the gallery’s portrait fund which enables the gallery to acquire portraits of outstanding national importance for the collection

Gala guests will be able to bid in a live auction led by Sotheby’s Lord Dalmeny for auction lots that include the opportunity to have a head and shoulders portrait painted by Jonathan Yeo and Nicky Philipps or a group portrait by Peter Monkman, to purchase a study of Self by Marc Quinn, to co-curate the gallery’s Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize 2014 exhibition or to sponsor a conservation project.

A raffle will offer guests the chance to win one of 40 luxury prizes. These include a Giles Deacon dress, a Philip Treacy hat and a Stella McCartney hand-bag. Other items include two exclusive Race Club passes to the Revolution track cycling series from FACE Partnership, restaurant vouchers for Soho House, Sketch and the Portrait Restaurant and tickets for the Almeida, English National Ballet, The National Theatre, The Old Vic and Gate Theatre Notting Hill.

Pen Portraits:

Frederick Burnaby by James Jacques Tissot, 1870

Pen Portrait by Sir Max Hastings


John Donne by unknown English artist, c. 1595

Pen Portrait by A S Byatt


The Three Witches from Macbeth (Elizabeth Lamb, Viscountess Melbourne; Georgiana, Duchess of Devonshire; Anne Seymour Damer) by Daniel Gardner, 1775

Pen Portrait by Amanda Foreman


Adelina Patti by James Sant, exhibited 1886

Pen Portrait by Marina Warner


Beatrix Potter by Delmar Banner, 1938

Pen Portrait by Dame Jacqueline Wilson


Sir Henry Lee by Anthonis Mor, 1568

Pen Portrait by Sir Roy Strong


D H Lawrence by Nickolas Muray, 1923

Pen Portrait by Sarah Singleton


Charles Rennie Mackintosh by James Craig Annan, 1893

Pen Portrait by Esther Freud


Paule Vézelay, self-portrait, c.1927-29

Pen Portrait by Joanna Trollope


Oscar Wilde, probably by Lord Alfred Bruce Douglas, spring 1900

Pen Portrait by Sir David Hare


Gwen John, self-portrait, c.1900

Pen Portrait by Sir Michael Holroyd


Thomas Cromwell, Earl of Essex, after Hans Holbein the Younger, early seventeenth century

Pen Portrait by Hilary Mantel


William Shakespeare, attributed to John Taylor c.1600s

Pen Portrait by Ben Okri


Frederick Burnaby by Tissot, 1870 (chosen by Sir Max Hastings). Copyright National Portrait Gallery.

Frederick Burnaby by Tissot, 1870 (chosen by Sir Max Hastings). Copyright National Portrait Gallery.