Eiderdown Books presents Painting Women Writers by Susanne du Toit on Wednesday 7th June at Burley Fisher Books.
In 2019, the artist Susanne du Toit was commissioned by the National Portrait Gallery, London to paint a portrait of Jeanette Winterson CBE for their collection. Inspired by her close encounter with the writer, Susanne du Toit undertook nineteen further portraits of contemporary women writers, including short story author and novelist Irenosen Okojie MBE; the journalist, author and podcaster Dolly Alderton; Sunday Times Bestselling author Clover Stroud; and writer, filmmaker, broadcaster Juliet Jacques.
Join Susanne with one of her sitters Irenosen Okojie for a special evening talking about art and literature, portrait painting and character creating, with the new book published by Eiderdown Books which documents this two-year project.
Susanne du Toit is a South African born, UK based painter, printmaker, and ceramicist who has exhibited widely and won several awards for her work. She has a BA in Fine Arts from the University of Pretoria, South Africa, and a Masters in Fine Arts, majoring in printmaking and painting, from Massachusetts College of Art in Boston, USA. She has won awards at competitions including the Royal Watercolour Society and the Chichester Open Art Exhibitions, and won the prestigious BP Portrait Award in 2013. Her main practice is currently portraiture, and she has painted various personalities from the world of arts and entertainment, such as screenwriter Stephen Beresford and actors Timothy Spall, Stephen Campbell Moore and David Schwimmer.
Irenosen Okojie is a Nigerian British writer. Appointed to the Royal Society of Literature as a Fellow in 2018, her short stories have been published in the US, Africa and the UK. Her debut novel, Butterfly Fish, was published in 2015, for which she was a recipient of a 2016 Betty Trask Award. Her short story collection, Speak Gigantular, was published in 2016. It was shortlisted for the 2016 inaugural Jhalak Prize and the 2017 Edge Hill Short Story Prize. A collection of short stories, Nudibranch, was published in 2019. It was longlisted for the Jhalak Prize 2020. The story ‘Grace Jones’ won the 2020 AKO Caine Prize for African Writing. In 2021 she was awarded an MBE For Services To Literature. A novel, Curandera, is forthcoming in 2022.