Self Portrait Series

11th April – 19th July 1991

Bryan Charnley began painting the Self Portrait Series in April 1991.He was encouraged by the CEO of SANE, Marjorie Wallace to keep a diary which would also help to explain the imagery. The last two portraits have no text but communicate everything within the image. The final portrait was found on the easel in his studio where he took his life in July 199.

All paintings are oil on canvas and measure 20 x 20 inches (51 x 51 cm.) Bryan Charnley’s diary notes are shown below each of the self portraits they refer to.

In 2018 The Wellcome Collection acquired thirty paintings by Bryan Charnley. Fifteen of these were from Bryan Charnley’s Self Portrait Series. These can be viewed via the Wellcome Collection online catalogue: orby appointment with the Wellcome Collection to see the originals.

Self Portrait 11th – 16th April 1991
Conventional portrait painted in two sittings. Is it a good likeness? Drug dosage was two 3 mg. tablets of Depixol daily plus two 25 mg. Tryptisol. I was sleeping a lot. 11th to 16th April 1991.