Olivia Colman by Hana Knizova is a portrait with splendor © NPG, London
LONDON- When the Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize 2014 exhibition opens next week, a striking, newly commissioned photograph of celebrated British actress Olivia Colman will also go on display for the first time at the National Portrait Gallery (NPG). Taken by photographer Hana Knizova, the project was commissioned through the John Kobal New Work Award, a prize awarded annually to a photographer under thirty whose work is selected for the Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize exhibition.
Colman was chosen for her outstanding contribution to British cinema, theatre, television and entertainment world. The photograph shows Colman leaning back on a vintage chaise longue in an unoccupied Victorian house in London, a location now popular for fashion shoots. The large photograph of the BAFTA award-winning actress, who has just finished filming the second series of acclaimed drama Broadchurch, is captured in a relaxed yet poised mood. Styled by designer and stylist Beth Buxton, Colman’s glamorous look was chosen as a direct contrast to the costumes she has worn in her recent roles.
Hana Knizova was commissioned to photograph a sitter connected with the UK film industry for the NPG Collection after her portrait of Elza and Nellie won the John Kobal New Work Award in 2013. The portraiture is of the identical twins Nellie and Elza. Born in 1984, London-based Czech photographer Hana Knizova worked as a model before undertaking an MA in photography at the London College of Communication. Her work has been seen in publications including Marie Claire, InStyle and Dazed and Confused and she has exhibited in the Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize on two occasions (2012 and 2013). She continues to live and work in London.
Simon Crocker, Chairman of the John Kobal Foundation, and judge of the John Kobal New Work Award, says:
We were thrilled to have the opportunity to commission a portrait of Olivia Colman. She is an outstanding actress and was a wonderful subject for Hana who delivered a compelling portrait. The foundation, through the John Kobal New Work Award, encourages the creation of new work in portrait photography and is delighted to continue its association with the NPG and the Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize
Olivia Colman by Hana Knizova will go on display in the NPG’s to coincide with the opening of the Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize 2014. The winner of this year’s John Kobal New Work Award will be announced, along with all the prize winners of the Taylor Wessing Prize 2014, on the evening of Tuesday 11 November 2014.