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Darwin Bernardo


DARWIN Bernardo helped to establish the Nutmeg community trust in 2008.

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Exhibition puts artist’s portrait in the picture

Sunday, 06 April 2014

Portrait of an artist: Yanko Tihov at home in his studio in Bounds Green

Portrait of an artist: Yanko Tihov at home in his studio in Bounds Green

Recognised: The portrait of Yoana Bukovska, which is going on display in the Royal Society

Recognised: The portrait of Yoana Bukovska, which is going on display in the Royal Society

A PORTRAIT by an Enfield-based artist has been selected from more than 1,000 entries to appear alongside works by some of Britain’s leading painters at a central London exhibition.

Yanko Tihov, who lives and has a studio in Natal Road, Bounds Green, will see his portrait of Bulgarian actress Yoana Bukovska displayed at the Mall Galleries, near Trafalgar Square, for the Royal Society of Portrait Painters’ annual exhibition in May.

“I feel great about the decision,” said the 37-year-old, who is from Bulgaria. 

“It is nice to know that a portrait with such a story behind it has been recognised.”

With more than 200 works being displayed, it will be the biggest exhibition of recent portraits in the country.

“These opportunities are great as they let you put your work alongside other great artists and help raise your profile,” Yanko added.

He began his career at the National Academy of Arts in his home country, but says opportunities for young artists were limited and he decided to head to England in 2000.

“I first moved to Cambridge to live with my uncle, who was a physics professor at the university,” he explained. “Like Bulgaria, the opportunities were limited, so I decided to move to London.”

Working from a rented studio in Notting Hill, in west London, Yanko began to build a reputation as a painter and printmaker in the capital and saw the first piece he entered for a Royal Academy of Arts exhibition accepted.

“It might have been a bit of luck, but it did make me think, ‘wow, something is happening here’,” he said. 

Yanko went on to win a number of awards and his work was exhibited nationally and internationally. He moved to the borough three months ago from Notting Hill, where he had been based for 13 years.

“I moved because you could get a lot more space for less money, which I needed for my work,” he said.

“And I love it here. It is spacious and really quiet, so I can concentrate, plus it is still only 35 minutes away from Covent Garden.”

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