'The Secret of England's Greatness' (Queen Victoria presenting a Bible in the Audience Chamber at Windsor)
by Thomas Jones Barker
Year 7 - 13
The National Portrait Gallery Collection contains life stories that reflect many aspects of British society past and present. The portraits help students raise questions and explore issues of identity, democracy and human rights making an ideal starting point for citizenship learning for students KS3, GCSE and AS/A-Level.
Gallery session: 90 minutes – unless otherwise stated
One class, maximum 30 pupils
Lecture Theatre Discussion: 1 hour
Maximum 138 students
Images of Power: From Divine Right to Democracy
Students trace the process of establishing parliamentary democracy in Britain through images from three different periods – the reign of Charles I and the interregnum, The House of Commons in 1833 and a selection of recent and present day politicians.
Campaign for the Abolition of Slavery
Looking at key figures along the road to abolition, this session culminates in an exploration of the large scale painting showing Thomas Clarkson addressing the Anti-Slavery convention of 1840. Students consider how individuals work together to bring about major social change, considering the roles of different groups of people, British men, women and freed slaves.
Votes for Women
Students analyse portraits of figures, male and female in both the suffrage and anti- suffrage movements. Students explore the sitters’ representation in the portraits and consider how public perception of their activities has changed over time.
This session takes place in the Ondaatje Wing Lecture Theatre and concludes considering portraits in the Victorian and Early Twentieth Century Galleries.
Image banner: Photograph Marysa Dowling ©National Portrait Gallery, London
A project encouraging young artists with opportunities to gain insights from past BP Portrait Award artists.