Plus One Gallery

Andrew Tift: Portraits

14 October - 7 November 2009

Plus One Gallery is please to present a portrait based exhibition by Andrew Tift, primarily featuring new and recent portraits from America and Japan. 

In 1994 British Petroleum sponsored Tift to spend a month in Japan to develop a series of portraits which were presented at his solo show, 'Sayonara Pet', at the National Portrait Gallery in London. Last year Andrew made an inspirational return visit to Tokyo to develop some more portraits. 

'Portraits' unveils a series of work inspired by Tift's time in New Mexico as well as Tokyo. Over the past 5 years Tift has made a number of visits to various parts of New Mexico, driving around the state on the look out for interesting sitters. He found huge inspiration in the diverse culture which exists there, such as Native American Indians, hippies, Vietnam veterans, cowboys, musicians, artists and authors. 'Portraits' also includes some of his initial Japanese portraits of Tokyo life including the Jazz musician Isao Suzuki who played with the great names form the golden age of American Jazz like Ella Fitzgerald, Art Blakey, Thelonious Monk and Charles Mingus as well as portraits from the highly flamboyant Harajuku Punks who congregate around Harajuku Park each Sunday and strut like peacocks together with studies of people that Andrew encountered in Ueno Park. Also in the show are character studies from Tift's native Black Country such as Hells Angels and old steel workers that he has kept in touch with since his MA studies at the University of Central England. 

Tift has exhibited in the B.P. Portrait Award at the National Portrait Gallery 10 times and has been shortlisted for the first prize on 4 different occasions. In 2006 Andrew took the £25,000 First Prize for his portrait of Lucian Freud's first wife "Kitty". 

Tift has also won many other awards including The Japan Festival Award, The European Painting Award at the Frissiras Museum in Athens and the Emerson Group Award at the Manchester Academy of fine Art. He has painted portraits of a number of prominent sitters including Tony Benn, Neil And Glenys Kinnock, Lord Chief Justice Woolf and Cormac McCarthy amongst many others and is currently working on a new commission for the National Portrait Gallery. 

Tift has exhibited at commercial and public galleries and museums in London, Paris, Tokyo, New York, Athens and Santa Fe and has work in many public and private collections including, the National Portrait Gallery (London), The Smithsonian Institution (Washington D.C), The House of Commons (London), The Frissiras Museum (Athens), The New Art Gallery - Walsall, Birmingham Museum and Art Gallery, Sunderland Museum and Art Gallery.