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theguardian - 10 days ago

Jonathan Yeo’s portrait of Charles III review – a formulaic bit of facile flattery

A psychedelic sea of lurid reds and a clunking monarch butterfly cannot save this superficially observed and carelessly executed bland banalityIt’s hard to be objective about an artist you like as a person. I recently met the painter Jonathan Yeo – whose portrait of King Charles has been unveiled in a storm of crimson hype – on a radio show and was instantly charmed. It’s easy to see why famous people enjoy being portrayed by Yeo. He’s intelligent, relaxed, unassuming. We talked about a studio visit. But then I had a look at his works online and cringed. And that was before I saw this right royal banality.Yeo’s portrait of the king is replete with all his vices. It is technically superficial and unfelt. There’s no insight into the king’s personality here, just a weird allegory about a monarch butterfly that Yeo says is a symbol of his metamorphosis from prince to king. Continue reading...


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