Ed Sheeran’s father shares details of his life in the arts during charity event speech

Ed Sheeran’s father told how he encouraged his son’s creativity at an early age and changed direction to support him and his brother due to the 2008 financial crisis, in a talk. at a charity event.

ohn Sheeran shared the details in an illustrated talk entitled My Life in Art, which has helped raise more than £40,000 for “two very significant Suffolk-based charities big for my wife, Imogen and me” – GeeWizz and Castle Community Room.

Mr. Sheeran, retired at the age of 60, has worked for over 40 years in the art industry, as curator, exhibitor and lecturer.

“I and Imogen encouraged Edward’s creativity, including drawing and painting, from an early age,” he said, in a souvenir program for the charity event held at Elveden Hall in Suffolk. .


John Sheeran (left), with his sons Ed Sheeran (centre) and Damien Hirst. (My life in art/PA)

“In 2019, after finishing his world tour, he started painting again, producing 40 abstract paintings in a month.

“For his music, he was incredibly oriented.

“He was inspired by Jackson Pollock’s technique and style.

“I filmed and photographed him at work.”

Mr Sheeran said he and his wife moved from their one-bedroom flat in London to Hebden Bridge in West Yorkshire in 1986, with son Matthew born in 1989 in Halifax and brother Edward in 1991.

They moved to Framlingham in Suffolk in 1995, running the art consulting firm Sheeran Lock.

Mr Sheeran said the business “was hit hard by the financial crisis” from 2007 to 2008, and he and his wife had “had a hard time supporting” their two sons up to this point. are studying music.

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As a result, he said, they changed “the direction of work”.


John Sheeran, father of singer Ed Sheeran, speaks titled My Life In Art at a charity event at Elveden Hall in Suffolk. (Kerry McLaughlin Photography / PA)

“Projects and funding have dried up,” said Mr. Sheeran.

“Our children also left home: Matthew studied classical composition at the University of Sussex, and Edward attended Access to Music College at Bow in London’s East End, as well as performing and recording.

“We find it very difficult to support them.

“Because of the urgent need, we need to change the direction of our work.

“We decided to focus on what we both wanted to do.

“Imogen started a jewelry business from scratch, working from home.


John Sheeran (left), with David Hockney and Imogen Sheeran at David Hockney’s studio in Los Angeles. (My life in art/PA)

“I started a public art teaching business that combines art history with art appreciation.

“After traveling a lot for my job as an art curator, I decided to limit my speaking engagements to Suffolk and to locations less than an hour’s drive from home.

“I read hundreds of art books over the months to prepare.

“It is extremely stimulating.

“Necessity was really the mother of invention for me when I ended up creating my perfect work.

“After a very difficult year when we felt we might be going down, we’re back on our feet.”


Painting by Ed Sheeran after the end of tour in Split. (My life in art/PA)

Two charities supported by the event Mr. Sheeran spoke to were GeeWizz, which supports children and young people with life-limiting disabilities or illnesses, and Castle Community Chamber in Framlingham, Suffolk.

The near-completed site will replace Victoria’s late St Michael’s Room, where Mr Sheeran first began giving public art presentations in 2008.

In a show printed and sponsored by Healey’s Printers, he said, his pop star son brought him to meet the giants of the art world, including Damien Hirst and David Hockney.

“In 2015, Edward took me to meet his friend Damien Hirst at his studio and home in Gloucestershire,” said Mr Sheeran.

“We visited Damien again in 2019, this time at his studio in central London.

“He is doing a series of paintings of cherry blossoms.


Lord Iveagh (left) at Elveden Hall where the charity event was held, with Imogen Sheeran, John Sheeran (Ed Sheeran’s parents) and Gina Long (right). (Kerry McLaughlin Photography / PA)

“Imogen and I saw them on display at the Fondation Cartier, Paris, in 2021.

“It was one of those special, interesting exhibits that we didn’t want to leave.

“In 2018, Edward introduced us to David Hockney at one of his gigs in Los Angeles.

“I met Hockney 30 years earlier in Bradford, West Yorkshire, when I worked there as a curator.

“In 2020, Hockney invited both of us to his studio in LA to see his latest work, including some of his early Normandy paintings.

“We had a good time with him.


John Sheeran, father of Ed Sheeran, paints while on vacation in Umbria, Italy in 2021. (My Life In Art / PA)

“We love his relentless positivity, the way he celebrates his art, and the way he brings joy to so many people.

“He opened a bottle of champagne and started singing old Yorkshire songs to us.

“It was hilarious. What a highlight that visit was for both of us.

“A good and wonderful man.”

He added: “Edward encouraged me to consider art as a hobby in retirement.

“I am very amateur.


John Sheeran said his lecturing in the Marble Hall at Elveden Hall was a ‘real treat’. (Kerry McLaughlin Photography / PA)

“I thought I would be too critical of what I produce, but actually, when it comes to it, I don’t care.

“I like to shoot landscapes – expressing what I feel, rather than documenting what I see.

“Like Edward, I give my pictures to family and friends.

“I love the idea of ​​them having a little piece of me hanging on their wall.”

Mr Sheeran said that giving the charity lecture at Elveden Hall was a “real treat for me”.

“We’ve lived in Suffolk for 27 years and passed near the Hall many times on our way to Parcs Center with our boys, or to Euston Hall or Thetford Priory,” he said.


John Sheeran said his son Ed encouraged him to pursue art as a hobby in retirement (Ian West/PA)

“I’ve always wanted to visit but never thought it would, as the Hall has been uninhabited for decades and is now mainly used as a filming location.”

But he said he “finally got my wish” when he, his wife, and Gina Long of GeeWizz Charity went to see Edward Guinness, 4th Earl of Iveagh, and he “accepted” their idea for a charity event, including an auction.

Mr Sheeran said afterwards: “I am delighted to give the ‘My Life in Art’ lecture with the support of two Suffolk-based charities that mean so much to my wife, Imogen and I.

“Being able to speak in the Marble Great Hall, in all its uncanny splendor, is a real thing to me.

“I feel blessed to have had such an exciting, challenging and exciting working life, and to be able to share this with invited guests in such a magnificent, historic home.”

Gina Long MBE, founder of the GeeWizz Charity Foundation, said: “We are incredibly grateful to Lord Iveagh for giving us this very prestigious venue and remarkable opportunity to host a fundraising evening. wonderful in Elveden, in the wonderful Marble Hall, which has been likened to a Taj Mahal magically transported to the frigid heartland of Suffolk.

“We are also indebted to John Sheeran for sharing his My Life In Art, during these challenging and uncertain times.”

For details on GeeWizz Charity, see www.geewizzcharity.com

For details on the Community Rooms in the Castle see www.castlecommunityrooms.co.uk

https://www.independent.ie/entertainment/music/ed-sheerans-father-shares-details-of-his-life-in-art-in-speech-at-charity-event-42026068.html Ed Sheeran’s father shares details of his life in the arts during charity event speech

Fry Electronics Team

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