Amy—Blue (Amy Winehouse) by Marlene Dumas, 2011 © Marlene Dumas

Amy Winehouse Turned into Oil at the National Portrait Gallery

AMY WINEHOUSE is to appear at the National Portrait Gallery in the form of an oil painting by South African artist Marlene Dumas.

“The National Portrait Gallery is very pleased to acquire this important portrait of an influential singer and songwriter,” said Sandy Nairne, the gallery’s director.

Painted after the singer’s death last year, the work, called Amy-Blue, has Winehouse gazing downward, her tired eyes brought to life by the trademark showy make-up. The painting goes on show from today.

As its title suggests, Amy-Blue is mostly blue in tone, with black used for facial features and with muted pink struggling to break through Winehouse’s skin.

“Dumas’s liquid handling of paint carries tremendous emotive power,” said Sarah Howgate, Contemporary Curator at the National Portrait Gallery.

“Detail bleeds into and out of her work, directing and dispersing the gaze of the viewer. The rich, translucent blues of this portrait allude to Amy Winehouse’s musical influences as much as to the melancholy details of her career.”