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Portraits by Jane Runchman, Martin Beek, Maureen Nathan and Janice Wahnich

Julia Kay’s Portrait Party celebrates Andy Warhol!

Julia Kay’s Portrait Party (JKPP) is an international collaborative art project involving more than 650 artists from more than 50 countries. Working in both digital and traditional media, members of JKPP have made more than 20,000 portraits of each other in less than two years.

 Although the portrait party mainly operates over the internet, every now and again the contributing artists arrange a party in the real world, and Bexhill is the next party hot spot.

The meeting on Sunday 12 February at the De La Warr Pavilion will be the fifth meet up in Europe, other venues have been London’s Royal Festival Hall, a church in Oxford, a bookshop in Barcelona and an artist’s studio in Brussels. Some meetings are closed to the public, but at this event you are very welcome to bring your pads and pencils and join in.

Organiser, Erica Smith, told us a bit more about JKPP: “I have been a member of the group for about 18 months. I’m not a brilliant artist, but my drawing and painting has really improved as a result of being part of the Portrait Party. There is something really special about drawing someone else – even if you draw from a photograph viewed on your computer screen, you feel very close to the person because you have spent time really looking at them and thinking about them. I have attended all the JKPP events in Europe, and it is always a delight to meet the people that you have drawn. I thought it would be lovely to organise an event locally, and the Andy Warhol show at the De La Warr Pavilion is the perfect venue!”

JKPP artists cover a huge array of talent, media and ages. Some artists are just starting out, and some artists, like Martin Beek, who will be at the Bexhill party are long established fine artists. Martin will be launching his book Recent Portraits at the event, and Oxford-based artist Jane Sherwood will also be show-casing her new book, Portraits.

Julia Kay, the creator of the portrait party, is an artist based in San Francisco. She set up the online community because she was hungry to draw as many people as possible. She had no idea the Flickr group would become an international phenomenon. Erica said: “I met Julia Kay in Brussels last year, and although she won’t be here in person for our party, we plan to have a drawing session with her on Saturday using Skype.”

The Portrait Party will run from 11am–4pm on Sunday 12 February at the De La Warr Pavilion in Bexhill – look out for people sitting and drawing each other, and feel free to join the party!

More information:
You can view JKPP’s ever-increasing ‘river’ of portraits here.
Read more about Julia Kay here.
Read an interview with Erica Smith about Julia Kay’s Portrait Party here.

Posted 10:48 Thursday, Jan 26, 2012 In: Arts News

Also in: Arts News

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