Irish painter, Al Freney, was recently selected from over 2,350 international entries as the only Dublin based artist to exhibit at the 32nd annual BP Portrait Award in London – the world’s most prestigious portrait competition, which promotes the very best in contemporary portrait painting. Housed in the National Portrait Gallery, Freney’s work entitled, ‘At This Time of Night’, is one of 55 portraits which will be viewed by over 500,000 visitors during the exhibition. ‘At This Time of Night’ was chosen for the exhibition by some of the UK’s leading experts including Iwona Blazwick OBE, Director, Whitechapel Gallery, Rosie Broadley, Associate Contemporary Curator and Sandy Nairne, Director of the National Portrait Gallery, artist, Paul Emsley and Jonathan Jones, Art Critic with The Guardian.
Freney’s ‘At This Time of Night’ is a self-portrait, which conveys the emotions experienced at the end of a relationship and the confusion and sense of abandonment that comes with it. Bringing together poetry, a range of different images styles and well known lyrics from songs such as ‘Fool’ by Damien Rice, ‘Nude’ by Radiohead and ‘Sugar Baby’ by Bob Dylan, each with the musician’s support; the work aims to separate the mental presence from the physical.