New Vivienne Westwood portrait unveiled at National Portrait Gallery

The designer was photographed by Juergen Teller

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The Independent Culture

The National Portrait Gallery has unveiled its commissioned portrait of designer Dame Vivienne Westwood – as London Fashion Week draws to a close.

The British fashion talent was captured in her London garden, amid roses and other foliage, by German artist and photographer Juergen Teller.

The four-foot high, almost full-length image has gone on display today to celebrate 10 years of support from the JP Morgan Fund for New Commissions.

Teller has previously worked with Dame Vivienne on a number of her fashion campaigns and was hand-picked for the project by both her and the Gallery.

Dame Vivienne said of the result: "Photography isn’t like painting, where you can decide how you want someone to look, but Juergen manages it. It must be something to do with where he places you in the picture, and the space he leaves around you."

 

The latest portrait follows past commissions including Dame Maggie Smith by James Lloyd, Dame Judi Dench by Alessandro Raho, and David Beckham by Sam Taylor-Johnson (Sam Taylor-Wood).

Sandy Nairne, director of the National Portrait Gallery, said: "This intimate photograph of Dame Vivienne is a thoughtful and distinctive portrayal of one of Britain’s most influential designers and campaigners, created by Juergen Teller, a long-term creative collaborator.

"I am hugely grateful to JP Morgan for their generous support over the past ten years towards such an important programme of commissions."

In other news, Dame Vivienne has lent her voice to the Scottish Independence debate. Supporting the Yes campaign, the designer said at her latest London Fashion Week show: “Fingers crossed they will win. Because if they do, it could be the turning point towards a better world.

“They could lead by example,” she added.

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