• Emily Prescott

The Londoner: Artist puts twinkle in the Mayor's eyes

Sadiq Khan has received a giant portrait of himself made entirely out of Swarovski crystals.

The piece, created by Indian artist Syed Azmathullah, is a way for the artist to give thanks to the Mayor. Azmathullah told The Londoner: “I present my Swarovski crystal art to the most influential people of the world as a token of appreciation and recognition for their hard work so this time I made the crystal portrait of Rt. Hon. Sadiq Khan to appreciate his achievement given his humble beginning.”

Although Azmathullah said he did not want to put a price on the art, he told us the unique portrait is made with approximately 28,000 crystals. He said: “It takes anything between four to five weeks as it is completely handmade and requires a lot of planning encrusting every single point-back crystal on to a specially designed mesh.” He added: “I came all the way from India on a short visit to the UK to make sure the portrait goes to its rightful owner and to the place where it belongs.”

Azmathullah has received a thank-you message from the Labour Mayor and said he awaits a picture of Khan with the crystal portrait.

Previously, the artist has designed crystal-studded renditions of Sajid Javid, Theresa May and David Cameron. He has kept a thank-you letter from David Cameron in which the former prime minister said he was “honoured” to be chosen “as a subject for your unique portrait”.

A spokesperson for the Mayor told The Londoner: “I’ve heard about having a sparkle in your eye but this portrait goes one step further. Mr Azmathullah delivered this striking Swarovski crystal portrait unannounced in person at City Hall several weeks ago.”

They added: “It is currently being kept in storage.” Probably for the best, the 1.5ft x 2ft crystal portrait doesn’t exactly scream for the many not the few.

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