LAS VEGAS ( Associated Press) — He won’t be alone when some first-round election commissioners are on stage with Roger Goodell in Thursday night’s NFL Draft.
Look for the guy painting only the players – with both hands, no less – of the players.
Rob Pryor, an acclaimed experiential artist from Los Angeles, will adapt the portrait, a set of which will later be auctioned by the NFL Foundation, with proceeds to benefit the organization’s work in social justice, youth health and wellness initiatives.
East met and spoke to all 20 draft prospects on Wednesday. Behind him were portraits of some recognizable people in popular culture, including a halftime artist at the Super Bowl in February: a painting of Snoop Dogg with a particularly penetrating gaze.
“The most important thing is to take a quick look at his personality,” Pryor said. “If I can’t put their soul into a painting like this, you lose what you’re doing. The more I know about a subject, the more I can fix the painting.”
So Pryor has done his homework while learning about each player, and what he says makes up for the “weird trance” he goes through while creating. Each player will receive a lithograph of Prior’s work.
Although Pryor works mostly with artists and musicians – she was recently selected to create the official portrait of eight-time Grammy Award winner Joni Mitchell at the 31st Annual Musikaires Person of the Year Benefit Gala at the MGM Grand – this Pryor Not his first foray into athletics.
“Boxing is my favorite sport along with football,” he said, “and one thing I can capture in the picture is the moments in the ring when it becomes magic.” The highest part of the game is the movement.”
So Prior, 57, made a portrait of Canelo Alvarez, widely regarded as the best boxer in the world, and it won much acclaim at last year’s Art Basel in Miami.
Mark Ganis, president of sports consulting firm Sportscorp Ltd. and a confidant of several NFL owners, associated Prior with the league. With the draft in Las Vegas, which bills itself as the “entertainment capital of the world”, Pryor’s presence on stage during the first round seemed fitting.
“Rob is the Leroy Neiman of this generation,” said Ganiss, “bringing high-end artistic interpretation to those magical and emotional moments of the game. Only he will be on stage creating art, in front of the audience, two by two.”
When the players were told that each of them would be given in the form of a lithograph similar to what was on display on Wednesday, they were surprised and certainly delighted.
“I’ll put it on my wall,” said Washington defensive back Kyler Gordon.
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