By Darla McCammon
An icon in the acting world passed away in October 2020.
Best known for his gravelly-voiced movie line, “Bond, James Bond,” Sean Connery made an impact that left audiences wanting more. Not so well-known is that his third wife, still living, has her own impact with her ability in art. Micheline Roquebrune Connery was born and raised in Scotland. Bilingual, she was fluent in English, French and Spanish.
Her parents were Moroccan-French and her childhood appears to have been an affluent life including parents who supported her desire to become an excellent golfer. As she became an adult, Sir Sean Connery, the actor and the artist, both lovers of the game of golf, met in Casablanca Monaco. This meeting occurred at a golf event while Connery was still married to actress Diane Cilento.
Following the golf event and their introduction, Connery and Roquebrune became a couple enthralled with each other. This sparked a romance that endured for many years. After Connery’s divorce from Cilento, Connery and Roquebrune wed in 1975. Roquebrune’s art was admired by many, including Connery, who sat for several amazing portraits. She continued to create vibrant, eye-catching works of art that were enthusiastically received and exhibited such as a mesmerizing work she created about football.
Following is a quote from a Sotheby’s interview with Roquebrune about her career as a self-taught artist:
“At age 23, I went one day to La Galerie Charpentier in Paris and I was appalled by what I thought and judged as very poor quality pieces of so-called art. My reaction was ‘Why don’t I try? It must not be that difficult.’ At the time I had two children and was living in Casablanca, Morocco. I had not a clue about mediums to paint. I decided to paint a self-portrait. I sat in front of a mirror, looking at myself at a three-quarter angle. And I did it in one session of five hours, almost uninterrupted. The result was surprising. It was me, looking very nasty, mouth tightly closed. The three-quarter pose was exhausting and I had a terrible headache afterward. I had chosen oil paint for the making of the portrait. Being aware of my total ignorance, I asked the director of the Academy des Beaux Art if he would come show me how to paint. I would just look at him working. He kindly accepted. Not much happened but between two sessions I painted the head of my gardener. I finished the portrait in three hours.”
Her mentor came the last time, saw the portrait of the gardener, took turpentine, erased his own canvas and said, “You know much more about portraits than me. Just continue.”
You can find more of her work online by searching Micheline Roquebrune Connery.