A portrait of acclaimed film director, Ridley Scott has been loaned to Laing Art Gallery from the National Portrait Gallery as part of its COMING HOME initiative, which loans portraits of iconic individuals to museums in places across the UK they are closely associated with.
Scott was born in South Shields, Tyne and Wear in 1937 and his films include Alien (1979), Thelma and Louise (1991) and the Academy Award-winning Gladiator (2000). He was knighted in 2003 for services to the film industry and in 2018 received the BAFTA Fellowship Award.
The portrait at the centre of the exhibition is by Nina Mae Fowler and is part of a larger series that the National Portrait Gallery commissioned of leading film directors.
The artist captured the portrait of Scott with his face lit only by the light of the screen in an otherwise darkened space. Scott chose to watch the scene from a film that was a major turning point for him and his relationship to cinema. The title of the portrait, 29:04:37 refers to the exact film frame the director was watching when Fowler captured his image.
COMING HOME has been made possible by the National Portrait Gallery, the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, generous contributions from The Thompson Family Charitable Trust and funds raised at the Gallery’s Portrait Gala in 2017.