HomeCultureStriking portraits capture ‘honesty, rawness and reality of NHS’ during the pandemic
Striking portraits capture ‘honesty, rawness and reality of NHS’ during the pandemic
Portraits of NHS heroes have gone on display in a virtual exhibition celebrating their incredible efforts during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Organised by Oxford-based artist Tom Croft after he started painting his own portraits of healthworkers during the coronavirus outbreak, the display features NHS workers from across the UK.
In partnership with The Net Gallery, the exhibition was installed and scanned at Fitzrovia Chapel in London and is now available for a virtual tour online.
Croft and 14 other members of Contemporary British Portrait Painters (CBPP) have contributed to the exhibition, which is also raising funds for NHS Charities Together. His own portrait of Harriet Durkin, an A&E nurse at Manchester Royal Infirmary who had just returned to work after recovering from COVID-19 herself, is among the paintings on show.
“Portraits For NHS Heroes felt like a way of saying thank you and giving key workers something to possibly look forward to in these exceptionally challenging times,” says Croft. “It was also a way of documenting their personal stories and celebrating them through portraiture.”
Here are some of the portraits and the stories behind them.
Northern Ireland ambulance service worker Mark – by Angela Bell
Emily Housman and Funmi Tayo, colleagues in the maternity unit at the James Paget University Hospital in Norfolk – by Thomas Leveritt
Dr Matt May, A&E consultant at St Thomas’ Hospital, London – by Patrick Morales-Lee
Jo Habben, head of clinical governance and patient safety at Western Sussex Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust – by Jane French
Izzy Speight, a staff nurse at the John Radcliffe Hospital, Oxford – by Danny Howes
Steph Hedge, a staff nurse at St James’s University Hospital, Leeds – by Peter Davis
Paramedic Darren Neeld – by James Bland
Intensive care nurse Nina – by Steven Higginson
Karl Ellis, who works for the NHS in Oxford – by Tim Benson
Scarlett Brannigan – by James Crowther
Dr Alex Ward, a GP in the South of England – by Clive Bryant
Tasha Rainsley – by Ian Goldsmith
Senior sister Sharon Stone, who works at the Williton Hospital community and stroke rehabilitation unit in Somerset – by Peter Monkman
Midwife Seonaid – by Michael James Monaghan
You can visit the Portraits For NHS Heroes virtual exhibition here.
Next week from Monday to Thursday, Dermot Murnaghan will be hosting After The Pandemic: Our New World – a series of special live programmes about what our world will be like once the pandemic is over.
We’ll be joined by some of the biggest names from the worlds of culture, politics, economics, science and technology. And you can take part too. If you’d like to be in our virtual audience – from your own home – and put questions to the experts, email firstname.lastname@example.org