Winston Churchill portrait, which the UK ex-PM himself disliked, to be auctioned

15:28, April 17

A portrait of Winston Churchill, which the UK former prime minister himself disliked, will be auctioned off. The painting, by modernist artist Graham Sutherland, was painted in preparation for a larger portrait that Churchill hated and was later destroyed, AP reports.

The surviving sketch, painted in oil on canvas, shows Churchill's head in profile against a dark background.

The work is expected to sell at Sotheby's in London on June 6 for between 500,000 and 800,000 pounds ($622,000-995,000).

The UK House of Parliament commissioned Sutherland to paint Churchill to celebrate his 80th birthday in 1954. The full-length portrait was presented in Parliament that same year, and Churchill wryly called it “a remarkable piece of modern art.” Churchill is said to have complained that the painting made him look “crazy, although he is not.” The painting was delivered to his home and was never seen again. Years later, the Churchill family reported that it had been destroyed.

Her fate was recreated with poetic license in an episode of The Crown in which Churchill's wife, Clementine, watches the painting burn.

Sotheby's put the painting on public display in the room where Churchill was born 150 years ago at Blenheim Palace. The painting will be on display also at Sotheby's offices in New York, from May 3 to 16, and in London, from May 25 to June 5.

Follow STYLE on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram

  • Related News


  • Archive