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Displays (19)

Simon Schama’s The Face of Britain

Simon Schama’s The Face of Britain

16 September 2015 - 4 January 2016
Free

Simon Schama at the National Portrait Gallery, London © Oxford Film and Television Ltd

Historian Simon Schama joins forces with National Portrait Gallery curators to create five new displays exploring the development, character and meanings of British portraiture.

Roy Strong at 80: Photographs by John Swannell

Roy Strong at 80: Photographs by John Swannell

19 June - 31 August 2015
Main Hall
Free

This new display celebrates the eightieth birthday of the Gallery’s former director Sir Roy Strong who, with photographer John Swannell, has devised a series of portraits that transport Sir Roy through time, inventing and reinventing him as an array of historical characters.

The Tudors Reimagined: George Perfect Harding

The Tudors Reimagined: George Perfect Harding

14 March 2015 - 17 January 2016
Room 3
Free

This display explores the fashion for historical portraits in the early 19th-century by pairing watercolours of Tudor sitters made by George Perfect Harding with the original portraits.
Hidden: An unseen portrait of Oliver Cromwell

Hidden: An unseen portrait of Oliver Cromwell

10 July 2014 - 19 October 2015
Room 5
Free

Recent investigation has revealed what may be a hidden portrait of the Parliamentarian commander Oliver Cromwell beneath a portrait of the army officer Sir Arthur Hesilrige.

Cornelius Johnson: Charles I’s Forgotten Painter

Cornelius Johnson: Charles I’s Forgotten Painter

15 April - 13 September 2015
Room 6
Free

Prolific and successful in his lifetime, Cornelius Johnson is the forgotten man of 17th-century British art. This display looks at a range of his paintings including rarely seen portraits of the King’s children.

Favourites: Art and Power, 1600-1800

Favourites: Art and Power, 1600-1800

18 July 2014 - 26 July 2015
Room 16
Free

Throughout British history, the reigning monarch has operated a system of favouritism by which loyalty, support and achievement have been rewarded with privileges, titles and membership of exclusive groups. This system has been central to the hierarchy of traditional British society and has helped to protect the monarch and assert the crown’s authority.

William Gifford Palgrave: Master of Disguise

William Gifford Palgrave: Master of Disguise

3 August 2015 - 1 April 2016
Room 23
Free

This display showcases the Gallery’s diverse collection of photographs of the leading British explorer and scholar of the Middle East, William Gifford Palgrave (1826-1888).
Old Titles and New Money: American Heiresses and the British Aristocracy

Old Titles and New Money: American Heiresses and the British Aristocracy

25 November 2014 - 2 August 2015
Room 23
Free

A focus on the late-nineteenth-century phenomenon of American heiresses marrying into British aristocracy.  The display will explore how women such as Mary Curzon and Jennie Churchill became charismatic leaders of British society.

Curators' Choice: Photographs from the Terence Pepper Gift

Curators' Choice: Photographs from the Terence Pepper Gift

12 May 2015 - 24 January 2016
Room 24 and 31
Free

The works in these two component displays are drawn from around 2500 photographs from the nineteenth and twentieth centuries generously donated by Terence Pepper, Senior Special Adviser on Photographs. Curators’ Choice is a tribute to his skills of detection and identification, and his eye for an overlooked or mis-identified sitter or photographer, as well as his interest in charting cultural life in all its variety.
Keir Hardie: Radical, Socialist, Feminist

Keir Hardie: Radical, Socialist, Feminist

1 June - 1 December 2015
Room 25: case display
Free

This display presents a selection of portraits of the first leader of the Labour Party in Parliament, James Keir Hardie (1856-1915), to mark the centenary of his death on 26 September 2015.
George Scharf and his Circles: the National Portrait Gallery and the Victorian art world

George Scharf and his Circles: the National Portrait Gallery and the Victorian art world

21 September 2015 - 20 March 2016
Room 28: case display
Free

This display explores key social and professional relationships that were to prove vital to the success of his practice, through portraits of figures from the London art world, the nineteenth-century museum world and the aristocracy.

‘The artist’s cause at heart’: M.H. Spielmann, Collector and Donor

‘The artist’s cause at heart’: M.H. Spielmann, Collector and Donor

18 November 2014 - 19 September 2015
Room 28: case display
Free

A range of nineteenth century Punch self-portraits, photographs of sculptors and Jewish personalities throws light on the writer and art historian Marion Harry Spielmann’s work, and his decades of generosity towards the Gallery.

Henry Tonks: Studies of the Artist

Henry Tonks: Studies of the Artist

18 November 2014 - 12 July 2015
Room 29
Free

This display showcases three self-portrait sketches by one of the most influential art teachers of the twentieth century, Henry Tonks (1862-1937).  The studies were made on the eve of the First World War, while Tonks was a teacher at the Slade School of Fine Art.

Aubrey Beardsley: Artist and Aesthete

Aubrey Beardsley: Artist and Aesthete

14 July 2015 - 1 March 2016
Room 29: case display
Free

A focus on the illustrator and writer, Aubrey Beardsley (1872-1898). In a short life of intense and fevered activity, Beardsley produced many original and highly-finished black-and-white drawings for process block reproduction.
Women and the First World War

Women and the First World War

17 February - 25 October 2015
Room 31
Free

This display looks at the role women played during the war through a selection of portraits from the Gallery’s Photographic Collection.  

Jack Smith: Abstract Portraits

Jack Smith: Abstract Portraits

18 March - 31 August 2015
Room 32
Free

Continuing in the INTERVENTIONS series, this display focuses on unconventional approaches to portraiture and features abstract portraits by Jack Smith of the composers Harrison Birtwistle and Colin Matthews and the choreographer Ashley Page.
On Belonging: Photographs of Indians of African Descent

On Belonging: Photographs of Indians of African Descent

13 April - 31 August 2015
Room 33
Free

This display, fresh from its sensational showing at the National Gallery of Modern Art, Delhi in 2013, is the result of six years spent with the Sidi people, an Indian community of African descent. The artist's charming and poignant portraits raise universal questions about nationality, ethnic origin, and the nature of diaspora.

Creative Connections Year 3: Camden

Creative Connections Year 3: Camden

1 July - 10 October 2015
Room 37 and 37a
Free

Creative Connections is a four-year project connecting young people with contemporary artists to create a series of new artworks inspired by the Gallery’s Collection.

The spotlights for the third year of the project are the London borough of Camden and the portraits and biographies of people who have local connections. The project partner is Haverstock school and the artist is photographer Kate Peters. Together they explored the Gallery and its photographic Collection, the history of the borough and created new portraits in response to these. The students and Kate’s work will be shown alongside the Gallery Collection in the display.

Friendship Portraits: Chantal Joffe and Ishbel Myerscough

Friendship Portraits: Chantal Joffe and Ishbel Myerscough

11 June - 28 September 2015
Room 41 and 41a
Free

Friendship Portraits, a display of paintings and drawings by Chantal Joffe and Ishbel Myerscough, captures their very particular artistic collaboration. Self-portraits, portraits of each other and portraits of their children explore their lives and shared history from their student days to the present.

Supported by the William Brake Charitable Trust