Just Oscar

As a portrait artist, I often try to understand people’s motivations and values; I often find myself drawn to subjects and people who have done extraordinary things; it has always fascinated me what enables them to perform. When I first encountered Oscar Pistorius, I immediately wanted to paint his portrait and in the process to understand what made him to decide that he should run, not just in the Paralympics, but in the Olympics.

When he agreed to pose for me, I met him in Paris. He appeared very young, very open and humble. When I thanked him for giving me the opportunity to tell his story through the painting, he thanked me for the honour to be immortalised in a work of art.

When he put on his running gear and blades, his whole posture and expression became focused and different to the normal affable man I had just met; I was looking at the ‘Blade Runner’ not just Oscar. That is what I wanted to capture, the Blade Runner. However, when the session was over, he asked me if we were done; and then simply skipped off his blades like someone would skip of a pair of shoes, and just bumped into the chair without even taking a break in talking; somehow he made everyone forget that his legs weren't there, my perception of his disability changed completely.

That moment has become a second painting that I didn't plan - and it captures the exact moment of him  sitting in a chair without any prosthetics , just as he is. The title just had to be: "Just Oscar".


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Oil on canvas

74 x 90 cm


Selected Artwork


Commissioned Portraits