July 1, 2001, Rolling Stone Ronnie Wood was commissioned to paint a group portrait of diners who are regulars at the West End London restaurant The Ivy. Elton John and Pet Shop Boy Neil Tennant were two pop stars to be included in the portrait.
The picture was commissioned by Lord Lloyd Webber more than two years ago in an attempt to revive the neglected Victorian art of creating panoramic social scens.
The Ivy, he thought, would be the perfect setting for an epic picture of contemporary London society. He said at the time: “Restaurants became the talking point of London in the Nineties and, of these, none has come near to the Ivy as London’s top watering hole. It is where many colourful powerbrokers from all walks of life don the nosebag.”
Lord Lloyd-Webber said today; “the painting is going vbery well and I think Ronnie is doing a wonderful job.”
He said he hoped it would be ready to hang as part of an exhibition of his art collection – titled pre-Raphaelites and other Masters – at the Royal Academy