Sir Ian McKellen CBE

Russell & Robert meet iconic British actor Sir Ian McKellen CBE at his home in East London. We have a private tour of Ian’s art collection including stunning works by L.S. Lowry, David Hockney, Andrew Logan, textile artist John Allen and an Antony Gormley cast iron figure he chose to display in the River Thames at the end of his garden! We learn about Ian’s childhood in Bolton and how his father’s natural talent for art meant Ian chose a different way to express himself on stage and screen! However his own passion for art led him to buy a work to commemorate every part he’s played around the world and he even set up an artist residency in the house next-door. Ian remembers Andy Warhol taking his photo at The Factory in 1970s New York (& buying a screen print of Mick Jagger), being painted twice by his longterm friend David Hockney and why he sees the paintings of L.S. Lowry as stage sets. We also discuss the 20 portraits of Ian at the National Portrait Gallery collection by artists as varied as Cecil Beaton, Lord Snowdon, Mary McCartney, Trevor Leighton and Clive Smith who won the BP Award from the National Portrait Gallery and was given the commission to paint McKellen for their collection. Whilst, Christian Hook painted McKellen in the final episode of Portrait Artist of the Year on TV and won the prize also! Plus, find out which legendary Hollywood actor is also a secret painter - Ian owns not one, but two, of his colourful paintings!! ‘The Good Liar’ starring Sir Ian & Dame Helen Mirren (and our very own Russell Tovey!!) is out today in UK cinemas. Follow Ian on Instagram @IanMcKellen and the film at @GoodLiarMovie. If you enjoy this episode, please leave us a review at Apple Podcasts and visit @TalkArt for images of all artworks discussed in this episode.


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