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And the face of the City of Culture is… John Prescott!

23 January 2017

Introducing Rakewell, Apollo’s wandering eye on the art world. Look out for regular posts taking a rakish perspective on art and museum stories.

To Humberside, where the people of Hull are celebrating the city’s status as 2017’s UK City of Culture – a little too hard, if we are to believe the Sun

And one famous local has been a vocal champion of his hometown’s culture bash in recent weeks. Former deputy prime minister John Prescott has even adopted a portrait of himself by local artist Siobhan Ward as his Twitter avatar.

When asked about her likeness of Prezza, Ward was notably cool about the level of attention it attracted. ‘It’s really nice to see a lot of positive responses but it’s a bit strange because it’s not one of my better ones, I don’t think, just from an artist’s point of view,’ she told the Hull Daily Mail, explaining that the painting’s subject was chosen almost at random. ‘It was my husband’s idea, really,’ she admitted.

‘I was thinking of doing a portrait for the Open at Ferens a few years ago, and he said why don’t you do someone instantly recognisable and from Hull. He said, “What about Prezza?” and that’s how it all came about.’

Got a story for Rakewell? Get in touch at rakewell@apollomag.com or via @Rakewelltweets.

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