Welsh artist’s portrait is presented to Sir Richard Branson

Artist Chris Langley’s portrait of Sir Richard Branson has been presented to the founder of the Virgin group during a visit of Welsh business people to his home on Necker Island.

Chris, who lives in Newport and hails from Pontypridd, painted the portrait as one of a series of images of icons which has also included Wales rugby captain Alun Wyn Jones, Lord Sugar, and Cardiff restaurateur Giovanni Malacrino.

The portrait was taken to Necker Island by Tracey and Paul Smolinski, the founders of Cardiff-based Introbiz, a business organisation where Chris Langley is a member.

Introbiz members were invited to spend time honing their business networking skills with the multi-millionaire businessman on the 30-hectare island in the British Virgin Islands between December 4 and 9. The visit coincided with the Necker Cup featuring ATP/WTA tour tennis players and visitors help to raise more than £1 million for several charities.

Two notable sporting visitors were tennis legend Rod Laver, celebrating the 50th anniversary of his first Grand Slam win and Sir Nick Faldo, who played golf with Introbiz members.

Internationally-recognised artist Chris, who was unable to fly to the British Virgin Islands for the trip, said: “Tracey and Paul were so kind to take the portrait all that way and present it to Sir Richard. He was very grateful for it.

“I was inspired to paint it because he is a business hero and one of the most iconic people the UK has produced.”

Chris’s work has been on display in several public places across Wales, including at the Celtic Manor Resort in Newport where he was one of the artists in residence. His work has also been the subject of two previous solo exhibitions.

Inspired by Wales – its people, its buildings, and its landscape – Chris has sold works to private and business clients across the UK and internationally.

He is available for private commissions and encourages individuals and businesses interested in purchasing art for their premises to come along to the exhibition to view his work.