An exhibition celebrating the surrealist art of a Ross-shire painter went on display in Inverness this weekend.
William John MacKenzie, who was known as Bill, passed away in 2016 aged 76. Mr MacKenzie’s wife Joan has organised the display at Eden Court, which went live on Saturday afternoon to members of the public.
Mrs MacKenzie said: “Putting my husband’s artwork on display, I consider it a labour of love. It hadn’t been spoken about between my husband and me before he died but afterwards, I wanted people in the general public to see and appreciate his talent.”
Mr MacKenzie shot to fame in the 1980s after his depiction of Princess Diana as Da Vinci’s Lady with an Ermine was shared as far wide as Sweden and Germany.
Mrs MacKenzie added: “The painting was not meant to take away from the regal and royal side of Princess Diana and it was a facial expression of Diana that my husband found intriguing and wanted to create his own image of her.
“My husband didn’t make his name as an artist and it was really his take on Da Vinci that brought his artwork to the fore.”
Mr MacKenzie’s depiction of Princess Diana unfortunately is not be part of the exhibition due to the nude features expressed in the painting.
Other exhibitions of Aultgowrie man’s work have ended up with the rich and famous, with the artist gifting a painting to close friend Robert Plant of notorious rock band Led Zeppelin.
A man with a passion for Spanish bullfighting, Mr MacKenzie would often sketch the scenes that lay before him and document these through an Ernest Hemingway style of writing. Examples of the black and white sketches of the various bulls and Matadors will be accompanied by the texts in the exhibition.
Mrs MacKenzie added: “My husband regarded bullfighting as an art form. He seen it as a brave bull fighting for its life after having lived a wonderful life to this point as opposed to an animal going into an abattoir.”
The exhibition is on display for the duration of the month of September at the Highland capitals arts and exhibtion centre.