Top artist creates Dame Vera Lynn pop art to raise money for emergencies fund
Artist Lincoln Townley is selling a pop art canvas of war-time icon Dame Vera Lynn worth £100,000 to raise money to support those left isolated and vulnerable by the coronavirus pandemic.
Mr Townley said he and his team had created the pink and orange one-metre-square piece of the singer because she is a “symbol of hope” for the British public.
The work of art is due to be posted for sale on the website ArtNet.com with a guide price of £100,000. The sale price will be donated to the National Emergencies Trust (NET).
NET was set up in November last year to distribute funds to frontline organisations during times of crisis.
Earlier this month, the Duke of Cambridge launched an appeal to raise money for NET to help charities serving those suffering due to measures imposed to contain the spread of Covid-19.
Mr Townley, who is the artist in residence for Bafta, said the piece echoed the works in his Icons series, which features some of Britain’s most famous faces, including Dame Judi Dench, Kate Moss and David Bowie.
He told the PA news agency: “Obviously Dame Vera Lynn is a national treasure and I felt like it segued into where we are in the world at the moment.
“The world is in a state of emergency but looking at it in a national, UK point of view there are a lot of people that need help and I wanted to see what I could do to raise some funds.”
He continued: “It is a shadow effect. Pop art is a matter of layering, and I just created a template and I wanted to make it very punchy colours which most pop art is.
“We had a look into Dame Vera’s online presence and she seems to like pink, so I thought I will do it in a very hot pink colour and added some blue in for a bit of contrast.”
Dame Vera, who celebrated her 103rd birthday on March 20, has supported the NHS’s “stay at home, save lives” message.
In a message recorded from her home in Ditchling, East Sussex, she said: “We are facing a very challenging time at the moment, and I know many people are worried about the future.
“I’m greatly encouraged that despite these struggles, we have seen people joining together.
“Music is so good for the soul, and during these hard times we must all help each other to find moments of joy.”
Mr Townley said: “Dame Vera has inspired so much hope over the years so I decided to create an Icon of her to honour her, then and now, as a symbol of hope.
“Even now at the age of 103 years old she still inspires the country to pull together, to dig deep and find the strength to get through these times.”