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Jack Vettriano was born in Fife in 1951. After leaving school at 16, he became a mining engineer and did not start painting until his girlfriend gave him a set of watercolours for his 21st birthday. From then on Vettriano spent most of his free time learning how to paint, taking his first inspiration from impressionist paintings.
In 1989, Vettriano submitted two paintings to the Royal Scottish Academys annual exhibition. Both were accepted and sold on the very first day. The next year, Jack submitted three of his paintings to the Summer Exhibition at the RA, again these were enthusiastically received by curators and exhibit visitors alike. Following this success, Jack began life as a full time artist and over the next 20 years achieved sell-out solo exhibitions in Edinburgh, London, Hong Kong and New York.
In 1992, Vettriano painted The Singing Butler, which went on to become one of his most recognised images, driven by his hugely successful collection of art prints, and in 2004 the original painting sold at Sothebys for £744,500. In the same year Vettriano was awarded an OBE for Services to the Visual Arts and was the subject of a South Bank Show documentary called Jack Vettriano: The Peoples Painter.
With celebrity fans and world-wide fame, Vettriano went on to receive a variety of commissions for his work. In 2008, Jack was asked to paint a portrait of the Queens granddaughter Zara Phillips for the charity, Sport Relief. Then in 2009, he was commissioned by the Yacht Club of Monaco to produce a series of paintings to mark the centenary of their world famous yacht, Tuiga.
A major retrospective of Jack Vettrianos work will take place at Kelvingrove Art Gallery in Glasgow from September 2013. The exhibition will see 100 of Vettrianos pieces from private collections around the world in the same place for the very first time.