“Having a portrait painted was a great privilege and a completely new experience for me. However, it was a wonderful and thoroughly enjoyable process working with Hero, who took on board my wish that the portrait should capture a balance of approachability, inclusiveness and informal style, and give added confidence to our women students.
I was very fortunate to be able to come back to the College and see the portrait privately before it was mounted in Hall, which allowed me to admire in much greater depth the extraordinary detail and vibrancy of colour that Hero has achieved. It was of great importance to me, as the first female Master of Pembroke, that the artist commissioned for my portrait was a woman, and I hope that the result is enjoyed by many future generations of Pembrokians.”
Hero Johnson’s painting ‘Reflection’ has been selected for the Society of Women Artists Annual Exhibition 2019.
The Society of Women Artists Annual Exhibition
The Mall Galleries, London
25th September – 29th September
Hero Johnson’s pastel drawing ‘Sam in a Pink Shirt’ has been selected for the Trinity Buoy Wharf Drawing Prize 2019.
Formerly the Jerwood Drawing Prize, the exhibition opens in London before touring.
Salisbury Museum from 12th October 2019 until the 11th of January 2020.
Trinity Buoy Wharf from 18th of January until the 2nd of February 2020.
The Gallery at De Montfort University from 21 February until the 18th of April 2020.
Hero is delighted to have been made a member of The Contemporary British Portrait Painters.
Hero Johnson is enormously grateful to the Elizabeth Greenshields Foundation for the award of a grant.
The Elizabeth Greenshields Foundation grant is one of the most prestigious grants available to emerging figurative artists, as well as one of the most substantial. It is one of the longest standing, with an illustrious history of recipients spanning more than half a century. It is also unique in its scope, in that it is available to students and artists around the world
‘Empowered by Art’- Portraits of Women by Women
An exhibition of paintings and photographs by Hero Johnson, Miriam Escofet, Anastasia Pollard and Aliona Adrianova. Curated by Jemima Lovatt.
On display at the University Women’s Club 19th May 2018.
The portraits by Hero Johnson included those of Barbara Hosking CBE, Anna-Louise Felstead and Paulina Pluta.
Barbara Hosking’s autobiography ‘Exceeding My Brief – Memoirs of a Disobedient Civil Servant’ was launched at the Reform Club last month.
The back cover features Hero Johnson’s portrait of Hosking.
The book is available through Bite Back publishing:
And is reviewed by the New Statesman here:
I recently gave a short interview to Cass Art to support the ‘Face to Face; works by BP Portrait Award artists’ exhibition at their flagship Islington store.
Please click on the link below to read it and for further details of the group show:
66-67 Colebrooke Row
London N1 8AB
23 AUGUST – 10 SEPTEMBER 2017
Q: Are there other contemporary painters you admire?
Daphne Todd: Most of my original living heroes, such as William Coldstream, Francis Bacon, Patrick George and Euan Uglow are now dead. Paula Rego is, of course, very good indeed. I cannot think of anyone to touch her. Saied Dai, Antony Williams, Hero Johnson and Ben Sullivan are younger artists who I think have exceptional talent.
Q: What’s the most important lesson you have learned?
Daphne Todd: To just keep on. There will be ups and downs, rejections and accolades. I have known artists invited to be judges because of their eminence fail to have work accepted when they later submit to the same competition. They keep on. Sadly I have also known good, even excellent, artists give up at the first setback, harbour a grudge and avoid risk of failure, denying themselves the opportunity of success. Luck plays a huge part. If you paint for your satisfaction, you have the joy of doing it and solving problems.
Excerpt from Artists & Illustrators magazine Summer 2017. Interview by Sally Hales.
In loving memory of Michael Bond.
January 1926 – June 2017.
I loved Michael’s books as a child and it was a privilege to know and paint this wonderful man as an adult.