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‘Diane Abbott MP’ by Stuart Pearson Wright

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Description

October 2016’s Artwork of the Month is Stuart Pearson Wright’s portrait of Diane Abbott MP, the first black woman to be elected to the UK House of Commons. In the short film above, the sitter discusses this important painting. The portrait was commissioned by the Speaker’s Advisory Committee on Works of Art in 2003 to commemorate Diane Abbott’s important place in Parliament’s history. After working as a journalist and serving on Westminster City Council, Diane Abbott was first elected as Labour MP for Hackney North and Stoke Newington in June 1987. She has held this seat ever since. During Ed Miliband’s period as Labour Leader, Diane Abbott served as Shadow Minister for Public Health (2010-13). Under Jeremy Corbyn, she was initially Shadow Secretary of State for International Development (2015-16) and is currently the Shadow Secretary of State for Health. Stuart Pearson Wright studied at the Slade School of Fine Art. He won the BP Portrait Award in 2001 and has painted many notable individuals including John Hurt, JK Rowling and the Duke of Edinburgh. Wright’s portrait of Diane Abbott hangs alongside other contemporary works of art in Portcullis House. The display also includes Jonathan Yeo’s portrait of Paul Boateng, the first black Cabinet minister. Both works can be viewed by members of the public on specialised tours or attending House of Commons committee meetings. Learn more about the Parliamentary Art Collection at www.parliament.uk/art Find out how to visit Parliament at www.parliament.uk/visit