Sir Lenny Henry


By Martyn Burdon

© Martyn Burdon

Martyn Burdon studied art at A level but is otherwise self taught, having gained a BSc (Hons) degree in Product Design from Brunel University. His work was selected for inclusion in the Derwent Art Prize (2018), Trinity Buoy Wharf Drawing Prize (2019) and was previously seen in the BP Portrait Award in 2017.

The portrait is of Sir Lenny Henry, whose career includes acting, writing, comedy and television presenting. His recent campaign for equality in the arts has led to Birmingham City University creating the Sir Lenny Henry Centre for Media Diversity, which will look at representation across the industry including journalism, acting, flm, TV and radio in both front-of-house and behind the scenes roles. The artist contacted Henry to request a portrait sitting after seeing him in the Theatre Royal Stratford East’s production of August Wilson’s play King Hedley II.