Queen Elizabeth II
1 portrait on display in Room 32 at the National Portrait Gallery
Queen Elizabeth II
by Cecil Beaton
bromide print, October 1968
19 3/8 in. x 15 1/2 in. (493 mm x 395 mm)
Given by Gift of Mr Ford Hill, American Friends of the National Portrait Gallery (London) Foundation, Inc., 2015
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Artistback to top
- Cecil Beaton (1904-1980), Photographer, designer and writer. Artist associated with 1087 portraits, Sitter associated with 351 portraits.
This portraitback to top
Taken on the same occasion as the studies showing the Queen in an Admiral's Boat Cloak, this photograph shows the Queen in the north end of the White Drawing Room of Buckingham Palace, in which is displayed Francois Flameng's 1908 portrait of Queen Alexandra, wife of Edward VII (which is just visible far left).
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Subjects & Themesback to top
Events of 1968back to top
Current affairsEnoch Powell delivers his 'Rivers of Blood' speech in Birmingham in opposition to anti-discrimination legislation and immigration from the commonwealth. The speech is usually regarded as racist and blamed for stirring up racial prejudice. Powell was sacked from the shadow cabinet as a result, but received considerable public approval at the time for his views.Fay Sislin becomes England first black woman police officer.
Art and scienceBeaton Portraits is the first ever photographic exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery. Under the directorship of Roy Strong, the exhibition introduced a new, theatrical approach to display, and was so popular that the national press reported on the length of queues to get in and it had to be extended twice.
InternationalCivil unrest escalates in France as student protesters, joined by striking workers, clash with the police. The events came to represent the conflict between the new, liberalised, left-wing generation and the forces of authority and conservatism. French protests were mirrored by others abroad including the Prague Spring in Czechoslovakia, where political liberalisation was achieved for a few months before the country was invaded by the Soviet Union.
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