A new painting to thank Marcus Rashford for his work as a social Justice Campaigner on Child Food poverty has been on display. The painting was commissioned by the Producer and Writer JD Douglas, who wrote the stage production Black Heroes In the Hall of Fame.
His other work includes JA Story the History of Jamaica Musical and A Chatham Conversation.
As an Arts Administrator Douglas has worked as a Drama Officer at the Arts Council of England and as the Arts Manager of Charlton football club.
The Writer explained that he became moved when he saw a documentary with Marcus Rashford speaking out for the voiceless parents and children in 2020, on the need for school meals during the holidays for children across England.
In addition, Marcus Rashford read an open letter to the Prime Minister Boris Johnson, explaining how his half of society lived, and how due to no fault of their own, no matter how hard they tried, they would always face barriers preventing them from attaining a sustainable living standard. When Rashford’s mother, Mel, spoke of having to work three jobs to put food on the table for her children, Douglas knew something was very wrong.
“Here was a young man not afraid to bring up an issue normally left to the preserve of elected Members of Parliament and other social justice-oriented organisations, brave enough to take up the mantle,” Douglas remarked while watching football with a friend.
Douglas realised that he had to do something to keep reminding everyone of what Marcus Rashford had achieved for hundreds of thousands of young people, all over England. The idea of commissioning a painting was borne. Douglas contacted an artist friend, Damel Carayol whose work he had admired. Douglas sent him an image of Rashford taking the knee. “I thought it combined many things that needed addressing, ” Douglas said.
Over a drink with the artist Carayol, Douglas described how he envisioned the painting to include a reference showing Rashford’s Honorary Doctorate from the University of Manchester. So far the response has been positive with many people asking to be a photographed with the painting. Something Douglas never expected.