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Pierce Brosnan has received top billing on marquees across the globe and had his face plastered on billboards for decades. But pulling up to an art gallery on La Brea Avenue in Los Angeles this month to find his name above the title of a debut exhibition, “So Many Dreams,” delivered something new.
“This uniquely stands alone,” Brosnan told THR. “It comes with many emotions because I dropped into L.A. in 1982 and was very fortunate to land employment straight away on a TV show [Remington Steele]. I started painting in 1987, and the practice has been ongoing since then.”
The show, running through May 21, features 50 paintings and 100 drawings and even one NFT. (Also included on loan is his portrait of Bob Dylan that sold for $1.4 million in 2018 during amfAR’s Cannes gala.) There are self-portraits, in and out of character, one revisiting a scene from 1995’s GoldenEye, Brosnan’s first outing as James Bond, and another depicting the hitman Julian Noble from 2005’s The Matador.
“This is about letting go of the work,” Brosnan explained. “Otherwise, it’ll be lost or in storage. It’s a biography in some respects of the people, places and times of my life and hopefully a new beginning as well.” And he’s happy with what’s up on the gallery’s walls. “I feel a confidence in the work, and a certain sense of contentment with this chapter that has to be let go of so I can move on.”
To celebrate the turning of the page, Brosnan, wife Keely Shaye Smith and their sons Dylan and Paris Brosnan welcomed guests to the gallery on May 13 for an opening that also hosted Kenny G., Toby Emmerich, Sugar Ray Leonard, Jane Seymour, Rene Russo, Shaun White, Nina Dobrev, Adam Devine and more.
“It’s a love story,” Brosnan concluded about what hangs on the walls and his contributions to the art form over the decades he’s been putting paint on canvas. “It’s about a man who loves art, loves painting and desired to be a painter. It’s also a love story of my late wife and my wife Keely now of 29 years, and her encouragement and enthusiasm for my artwork and my practice. There are so many dreams, so it seemed like an apt title for this first initial footfall on the stage. It takes some kind of courage to do it, but I feel comforted in looking at the walls that there is an evolution here and something attractive with a style all its own.”
A version of this story first appeared in the May 17 issue of The Hollywood Reporter magazine. Click here to subscribe.
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