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In her new series of works, Josie McCoy continues to portray her favourite screen heroines. Josie McCoy never fails to disappoint with her impressive oil on canvas portraits. With a career spanning over 20 years, her unique and distinctive talent for blending oil paint has gained her a large following as collectors wait with baited breath for the next masterpiece.
McCoy’s subjects are almost always female, and she tends to choose characters or actresses that she’s particularly fond of, usually based on strength of personality. Amongst her recent subjects is Scarlett Johansson, who she presents as the character Cristina from Woody Allen’s 2008 movie ‘Vicky Cristina Barcelona’. Inspired by a still from an art gallery scene, the large-scale painting Cristina portrays a vulnerable looking Johansson with watery eyes. The backdrop, a deep ruby red hue, echoes the subject’s lipstick as she stares longingly beyond the frame of the canvas.
In a number of these recent works, McCoy has turned her focus to the subjects’ hair - an arguably challenging element to capture in her chosen medium. In Cristina, Johansson’s ‘up-do’ is a key part of the work occupying over half of the painting, and McCoy’s representation is delicate and precise. Its sister painting Cristina’s Hair I, presents the hair only as McCoy experiments with an unconventional composition. Much smaller in size at only 30 x 30 cm, this modest and unusual work offers the chance for collectors to own a McCoy original for as little as £1900.00.
Moon II is another large scale work where McCoy has made the subject’s hair a main focus as she depicts one of the characters from the 2002 film 'Hero' played by Ziyi Zhang. The colour palette is simple, predominantly shades of indigo with only the brown of the eyes and the pink of the lips as contrasting colours. For me, there’s something spiritual and beautifully serene about this piece as the graceful Moon gazes longingly into the distance. McCoy says of this work “I love that her face is so still while her hair is wild in the wind”.