Over the Rainbow: My Tribute to Audrey Hepburn

Breakfast at Tiffany’s is one of my all-time favourite movies. Audrey Hepburn, one of Hollywood’s most famous film and fashion icons, stars in the 1961 Romantic Comedy.

Audrey Hepburn is the subject of my painting, “Over the Rainbow”. She is immediately recognisable in her Breakfast at Tiffany's’ black Givenchy dress, Oliver Goldsmith Sunglasses and her beehive hairdo.

Much like the treasured objects we discover inside that distinctive blue Tiffany box, there is much more to discover about Audrey Hepburn than her most famous character Holly Golightly. 

The woman behind my Audrey Hepburn painting

Born Audrey Kathleen Hepburn-Ruston in 1929 in Belgium, to a Dutch mother and British father, her childhood was spent in both the UK and the Netherlands. 

As a teenage ballet student, Audrey helped raise money for the Dutch resistance (the start of a long career as a humanitarian), before landing a job as a chorus girl in West End musical theatre productions. 

The war was very difficult on Audrey and her family, although they managed to survive. She became very sick with malnutrition and other ailments. 

Audrey’s life changed dramatically when her big break came in 1953 with the dazzling romantic comedy Roman Holiday, starring opposite Gregory Peck. 

Audrey won numerous awards for Roman Holiday, including the Best Actress Oscar. She would go on to become one of the few EGOT (Emmy, Grammy, Oscar and Tony) award winners. 

Her career kicked into another gear following the success of Breakfast at Tiffany’s, with roles in Charade, My Fair Lady and How to Steal a Million cementing her as a movie and style icon. 

Audrey Hepburn slowed down in her later years, she had a notable cameo role as an angel in Steven Spielberg's Always. 

Hepburn the humanitarian

Audrey carried out humanitarian work whenever her work schedule and motherhood allowed. 

In 1989, Audrey was appointed Goodwill Ambassador of UNICEF, work that would see her showered with accolades, including the US Presidential Medal of Freedom and the Jean Hersholt Humanitarian Award. 

Audrey died in January 1993, almost five months after having been diagnosed with a rare form of abdominal cancer. 

My Audrey Hepburn painting

My aim, when creating this painting, was to celebrate Audrey Hepburn, surrounded by animals she loved dearly. 

To me, Audrey was a truly compassionate soul, a beautiful, intelligent and above all empathetic being. 

Despite suffering hardship both during and immediately after World War Two, Audrey used her star power to shed light on the plight of others. 

A little black dress and a huge heart 

It is almost impossible to think of Audrey Hepburn without bringing to mind her impeccable fashion sense, so it made sense for me to paint her as Holly Golightly, her character in Breakfast at Tiffany’s. 

While millions adored her style and elegance, there was substance to her too. She was someone who cared, very deeply, about those around her. 

This painting also features her beloved pets: Ip, her fawn, and Mr Famous, her Yorkie. The composition sets them all against a pale grey background, as a sort of homage to Audrey’s ability to stand out from the crowd. 

Above this loving group are rows of NYC Cherry Blossom trees, symbols of strength and resilience: while their delicate pink blossoms hint at Audrey’s femininity and grace. 

To buy an Audrey Hepburn print

You can browse my Audrey Hepburn art and other works here on my website, while TAP Galleries has a selection of my Limited Edition prints. 

All my works are printed on acid-free archival paper, standard paper or archival canvas. Each print is hand finished and is completely unique, every one is signed and has an ID number. 

If you want to discuss an Audrey Hepburn print or other work in stock, please don’t hesitate to fill in this contact form and I’ll get back to you straight away.

Thank you 

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