Jonathan Yeo (b 1970) is a British artist specialising in portraiture and collage. He didn’t go to art school but took up painting while recovering from Hodgkins Disease in his early 20s. He became known as a contemporary portraitist in the late 1990s, exhibiting frequently at the the National Portrait Gallery . His best known work includes a world weary Tony Blair painted at the very end of his premiership, an iconic painting of Erin O’Connor and now familiar images of Prince Philip, Dennis Hopper and Grayson Perry.
After a presidential commission was cancelled, Yeo instead made a collage of George W Bush which was unveiled at Lazarides Gallery, London, in 2007. Made entirely from pornographic magazines, it marked a new direction in his work, and subsequent subjects to receive the collage treatment include Hugh Hefner, Mary Whitehouse , Tiger Woods, Sigmund Freud and Paris Hilton . The exhibition "Blue Period" (2008) included nudes as well as portraits made the same way, and the follow up show "Porn In The USA" (2010) brought similar works, along with paintings and new wallpaper designs, to a new audience in downtown Beverly Hills.
Jonathan'a most recent body of work explores developments in cosmetic surgery and the lengths people are prepared to go in the pursuit of youth and beauty. These paintings were the subject of his exhibitions "You're Only Young Twice" in London and "Under My Skin" in Berlin.
Yeo's work is in the Royal Collection, the National Portrait Gallery and the House of Commons art collection. It has also been widely exhibited in galleries nationally and internationally (including Athens, Berlin, Bethlehem, Hamburg, Hong Kong, Los Angeles, Miami, New York and Shanghai). He has just published a print portfolio with The Paragon Press and there is a solo show planned at the National Portrait Gallery in 2013.
Jonathan Yeo is married to former actress and journalist Shebah Ronay and they have 2 daughters. He lives and works in London.