Lily Cole as Helen of Troy

oil on canvas

100cm x 75cm



"After over a year of discussion, when we finally organised the sittings, I was playing Helen at the Globe and was inspired by Jonathan’s powerful portrait of Kevin Spacey as Richard III. Jonathan came and watched the play and that became the basis of the portrait. He has done an extraordinary job of capturing my Helen in this image. When I look at it, I do not see myself, I see myself as another. I see Helen and what I came to know of her. I see the strength, the pain, and the penetrating gaze of a woman who has haunted the human imagination for several thousand years since she was understood as the catalyst for war. Perhaps most interestingly, I see her seeing us.”  

Lily Cole, 2014. From In The Flesh