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Sir Charles Barry

12 of 32 portraits on display in Room 22 at the National Portrait Gallery

Sir Charles Barry, by John Prescott Knight, circa 1851 - NPG 1272 - © National Portrait Gallery, London

© National Portrait Gallery, London

Sir Charles Barry

by John Prescott Knight
oil on canvas, circa 1851
57 in. x 44 in. (1448 mm x 1118 mm)
Given by the sitter's son, Bishop A. Barry, 1900
Primary Collection
NPG 1272


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  • John Prescott Knight (1803-1881), Portrait painter. Artist associated with 25 portraits, Sitter in 4 portraits.

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The leading architect of his generation, Charles Barry worked mostly in a classical or Italianate style but his major achievement was the Elizabethan-style Houses of Parliament which he designed together with Augustus Welby Northmore Pugin. In this portrait Barry is shown with a pair of compasses in his hand, resting his elbow on some partly unrolled architectural plans which lie on top of a Gothic-style cupboard. The plans presumably relate to the new Houses of Parliament which are seen under construction in the background.

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