VIDEO: Portrait shows what 'politics does for you', jokes South Yorkshire Mayor Dan Jarvis

Promoted by Barnsley Museums

Grey hairs and 'laughter lines' are what politics does to you, joked newly elected Sheffield City Region Mayor and Barnsley MP Dan Jarvis - as he posed for photos with this new portrait of himself.

And he revealed the thoughtful look captured by local artist Richard Kitson was the time he decided to stand for Mayor.

It is one of 18 portraits and a selection of drawings on display in the exhibition Richard Kitson Portraits: A Decade of Painting from Life, at the Cooper Gallery in Barnsley, until Wednesday, June 13. For more see www.cooper-gallery.com.

Dan said: "It's been a busy time for me and when he was painting this, quite a few months ago, I was sat there thinking whether I was going to put myself forward to be the Mayor.

"I think the hours of peace and silence I had sat in front of Richard was quite helpful to me in formulating my thoughts and deciding whether I was going to do it.

"But I'm really proud of what he has been able to achieve. I think it's a fantastic bit of work and I'm delighted to be a part of his exhibition."

The 45-year-old married father of three said he didn't realise he had so many grey hairs but laughed as he told how his wife, Rachel, had assured him it was a very accurate portrayal.

He said: "My wife pointed out the other day I have been the MP here for just over seven years. I never used to look like that.

"I was not certain I had got quite so many grey hairs or quite so many laughter lines but she assured me that Richard had got it absolutely right and that his portrayal of me was very accurate. And that's what politics does for you.

"But I think he has done a fantastic job, not just with mine but with all of the portraits. They are all very gritty. It's a style which I personally like. I think he is incredibly accomplished and he is a great asset for our cultural offer here in Barnsley. So I do hope people will get to the Cooper Gallery and come and look and enjoy it in the way all of us have."

Sheffield City Mayor and Barnsley MP Dan Jarvis with his portrait at Cooper Gallery in Barnsley. Photos: Scott Merrylees

Sheffield City Mayor and Barnsley MP Dan Jarvis with his portrait at Cooper Gallery in Barnsley. Photos: Scott Merrylees

He was asked to sit for the painting which the artist is now selling along with other work in the exhibition.

Artist Richard, aged 36, Sheffield born but living in Barnsley most of his life, recently appeared on Sky TV's Portrait Artist Of The Year, when he painted Paralympic gold medallist Kadeena Cox.

The full time teacher at Barnsley Sixth Form College is now making a name for himself in the art world - know for his hard, gritty, sometimes brutal warts-and-all style.

He said: "Dan spoke to his wife and they knew I wasn't going to paint an idealised version of him. I have included what I call thought lines. I've tried to capture experience. But that's what Dan was attracted to, I think.

"I think it's a honest portrait. I don't think it's overly brutal, but it's truthful," says artist Richard Kitson of his portrait of Dan Jarvis

"I think it's a honest portrait. I don't think it's overly brutal, but it's truthful," says artist Richard Kitson of his portrait of Dan Jarvis

"I think it's a honest portrait. I don't think it's overly brutal, but it's truthful."

Coun Roy Miller, Cabinet Spokesperson for Place, said: “It’s really poignant that Richard has returned to the Gallery to display this body of work for the first time. We are proud to host paintings and drawings by such a talented local artist, particularly ones that have been created in such a unique way. The exhibition perfectly complements the Cooper Gallery’s outstanding permanent collection, which itself contains some spectacular portraits.”

For more information about the exhibition and other events at the Cooper Gallery visit cooper-gallery.com

* The Cooper Gallery, Experience Barnsley, Elsecar Heritage Centre, Cannon Hall and Worsbrough Mill are free entry venues supported by fundraising charity Barnsley Museums and Heritage Trust - set up in 2015 to help preserve, enhance and champion the borough’s heritage for the future. To find out more, get involved and make a donation visit www.bmht.org.

Artist Richard Kitson with Sheffield City Mayor and Barnsley MP Dan Jarvis and his portrait

Artist Richard Kitson with Sheffield City Mayor and Barnsley MP Dan Jarvis and his portrait