The Mytholmroyd.net is delighted to be able to show this portrait of Ted Hughes by Reginald Gray. Reginald Gray is an Irish-born portrait painter and his work is represented in The National Portrait Gallery London (portrait from life 1960 of Francis Bacon) also National Portrait Gallery Australia and The Museum of London.
Reginald told us he has fed upon the works of Ted Hughes for many years and had just finished a hommage to him entitled "Ted Hughes in The Calder Valley". He then asked if it would be of interest to us to put on the Mytholmroyd website and sent the image displayed here.
The portrait measures 76x50cm and is oil on canvas as yet unframed. He has been living and working in France for the past 42 years but recently rented a flat in London, where he lived in the late fifties and early sixties. He still has a Paris Studio and works between the two cities.
Reginald told us that if our Ted Hughes Centre got off the ground he would like to donate the portrait as a gift to the Centre, adding
"After all the years pleasure I have received from reading Ted Hughes works this would be a very small return."
"One of my best friends in Paris is the Irish poet Derry O`Sullivan who writes mostly Gaelic and translates himself into English and French. He is also prof at The Sorbonne. He is a staunch reader of Ted Hughes and I am sure that if in the future your centre gets off the ground he would love to help in anyway possible."
"If by any chance you have problems getting the Centre off the ground in the near future, is there anywhere else in Mytholmroyd that the portrait could hang in waiting?"
"At the moment the work is not yet dry enough to waxvarnish as I do with all my works. Given time for this and having the framing done I could dispatch it to you in 3 or 4 weeks time by Fed Express or Parcel Force or some such. Anyway it is reserved for you for whenever you wish."
"In the meantime I will keep the portrait here and reserve it for your town. I would be honoured to have it hanging in the location where Ted Hughes was born and spent his younger days."
Further examples of his work and his biography can be found at this link www.artmajeur.com/grayportraits
The Mytholmroyd.net has supported plans for a Ted Hughes Centre at the Old Railway Station and remains committed to the idea. Mytholmroyd is the obvious place for such a Centre and we hope that in the near future new plans will emerge to bring this to fruition.
For now, we wish to extend our sincere thanks to Reginald Gray for permitting us to use his portrait on our website and ultimately in the Ted Hughes corner - our "Virtual Ted Hughes Centre" which is in the process of being updated.
See also: Ted Hughes Corner