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Eminent Portrait Painter June Mendoza Talks to Judith Monk rtist June Mendoza is tiny, lively and very A lovely. Unlike most homes where photo- graphs of loved ones dot the walls, June’s beautiful London home has real portraits everywhere; children at varying ages and grandchildren too. Leaning against a hall stand was a part finished, instantly recognisable, portrait of conductor Mark Elder and removers had just taken a large group painting of Chelsea Pensioners off the wall where it is on loan to Kensington Town Hall. It was about the dozens of musicians she has painted that I especially wanted to talk though. June was born to John Morton, musician Barry Tuckwell, the background is a and Dot (neé) Mendoza who was also a leather horn made by an artist friend musician, composer, violinist and pianist respectively. As a child June toured with her mother revelling in the exposure to opera, 12 years old, art was her obvious and To list all the subjects June has painted ballet, musicals and revues. She worked in unquestioned career path and she started life would be a long, long listing but start with small mime parts and crowd scenes in La classes at 14. Since then June has created every major Royal including the Queen more Boutique fantasque and Petrushka with the de hundreds of gorgeous portraits. I asked how than once and then think eminent politicians, Basil Russian Ballet Company and sketched many? “No idea, I’ve never counted them!” sports, stage, arts, radio, film and opera stars, during class, rehearsals and performances. By she replied, laughing. bu
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