New illuminating art of McLaren unveiled
More than 200 residents and visitors packed out the village centre at Bruce McLaren Retirement Village to witness an oil painting of the late, great Bruce McLaren being unveiled.
His sister Jan McLaren, who runs the Bruce McLaren Trust, unveiled the painting by Auckland painter Craig Primrose at the Dannemora village, following an introduction by Ryman Healthcare’s head of corporate affairs David King.
The occasion was more special with the presence of a McLaren road car and an original 1970 single-seater McLaren. Its owner Aucklander Dave Mitchell gave everyone a real thrill when he fired up the engine.
The artwork was commissioned by Ryman Healthcare and is the first of a series of paintings of each vil- lage namesake to be undertaken by Primrose, who plans to complete four a year.
King says Ryman is delighted to be able to honour Bruce McLaren in this way, and it’s fitting the tribute came at a time when the Formula 1 legend would have turned 80.
‘‘The impact Bruce McLaren had on international motorsport was huge and long lasting. We’re delighted to see the beautiful work that Craig has created and believe it will help preserve this incredible legacy for the benefit of our residents for many generations.’’
Jan McLaren was also thrilled with the painting of her brother, saying it combined with the attention created by the movie McLaren, released earlier this year, had had a huge impact on regenerating interest in Bruce’s story.
‘‘It really is a privilege for me to be involved with preserving his legacy, not just for our generation but for the younger generations coming up too.
‘‘The Bruce McLaren Trust has had a long relationship with Craig and I really love the artwork he’s produced. It’s a wonderful tribute to a great man,’’ she says.
Primrose has had a long career artistically capturing many superstars of the sporting world and was the preferred artist of another New Zealand legend and Ryman village namesake, Sir Edmund Hillary.
Primrose says the hardest part was portraying the McLaren cars, with the painting taking around two months.
‘‘There was a lot of research into the cars. We specifically tried to bring the cars from Formula 1 and the CanAm cars which he and Denny Hulme had great success in.’’
Jan McLaren, Craig Primrose and David King with the new artwork of motor-racing legend Bruce McLaren.