Dustin Lance Black

In April of 2015 the Commissioners of the National Portrait Gallery selected for the permanent collection this portrait of writer/activist Dustin Lance Black, making this the third of my paintings to be included in the collection at the Smithsonian. Painted in Los Angeles with Mr. Black’s cooperation during the winter months of 2012. “I am honored to have had the chance to paint Lance, to pay tribute to his remarkable career in the film industry and his tireless efforts to foster equality for LGBT persons.  The painting was done during a difficult period of Lance’s life as he was dealing with the illness and untimely death of his beloved older brother, Marcus. The painting is contemplative - a quiet, introspective look into the interior of a  busy man who always has a worthwhile new plan or project."

40" X 30" acrylic/canvas 2012

From Lance Black’s website:

“Dustin Lance Black is a screenwriter, producer and director, having won the Academy Award® and Writers Guild of America Award for Best Original Screenplay for MILK, the biopic of the late gay civil rights activist Harvey Milk starring Sean Penn.

An honors graduate of UCLA´s School of Film and Television, Black began his professional career as an art director and quickly transitioned to directing documentaries, television series, commercials and music videos. Black´s documentaries ON THE BUS (2001) and MY LIFE WITH COUNT DRACULA (2003) debuted to acclaim and lead to a successful stint producing and directing TLC´s and BBC´s hit program FAKING IT, which received notices for its unflinching sociological commentaries.

In 2004, Black signed on to draw on his devout Mormon childhood experiences in San Antonio, Texas as a writer and co-producer on HBO´s Emmy® and Golden Globe® nominated polygamist drama BIG LOVE. He continued to write for the show until the third season wrapped in 2008.

Mr. Black also penned the screenplay for PEDRO, the first scripted project from Bunim-Murray Productions about the life and legacy of famed openly gay, HIV positive Real World cast member Pedro Zamora. The film premiered at the 2008 Toronto International Film Festival and earned Mr. Black his second WGA Award nomination when it premiered on MTV and VH1 in 2009.

Recently, Black completed his feature directorial debut VIRGINIA starring Jennifer Connelly and Ed Harris and has teamed up with director Clint Eastwood, actor Leonardo DiCaprio and Imagine Entertainment to scribe J.EDGAR, the story of famed FBI director J. Edgar Hoover.

Black is currently writing THE BAREFOOT BANDIT for FOX based on the true story of Colton Harris-Moore, and recently signed on to adapt Jon Krakauer´s acclaimed UNDER THE BANNER OF HEAVEN for Warner Brothers.

Beyond his film work, Black is also a civil rights activist. He is a founding board member of the American Foundation for Equal Rights (AFER), which is leading the Federal Case against Prop 8 in CA with lawyers David Boies and Ted Olson, and is on the Board of the Trevor Project, an LGBTQ teen suicide hotline providing crisis intervention and suicide prevention services for LGBTQ youth.

Since winning the Oscar in 2009, Black has been on a equal rights speaking tour across the country, and was one of a handful of organizers of the LGBT March on Washington in October 2009 where he spoke to an audience of over 150,000 demonstrators in front of the Nation´s Capital.

Black has had two books published, has written for every major screenwriting magazine, contributes to The Daily Beast and The Huffington Post, topped the list of OUT Magazine´s 40 under 40, and has repeatedly been named one of the 50 most powerful LGBT people in America today by that same publication.”