Statement of the scope and purpose of our enquiry and opinion service and staff research on non NPG portraits

The National Portrait Gallery responds to public enquiries concerning British portraits and can provide opinions on the identification of sitters and the dating of works owned by private individuals or institutions. On occasion, it may be possible to provide an opinion on authorship or other details concerning the production or status of the portrait. National Portrait Gallery staff opinions are based on both archival research (especially using the resources of the Heinz Archive and Library) and personal experience of the subject. Staff cannot be held liable for these opinions and cannot provide valuations or comment on valuations supplied. Staff cannot evaluate works of art created by enquirers and the Gallery does not provide a portfolio review service.When relevant we will freely provide information otherwise in the public domain. Information supplied by the Gallery should not be treated as definitive nor should the opinions of Gallery staff be quoted in publication without the permission of the Gallery. Where portraits have been offered to the Gallery as potential acquisitions, or may at some time in the future be offered, further research may be undertaken as part of a process to investigate the authenticity of the portrait and potential relevance to the Collection. The Gallery has a long history of recording and cataloguing the iconographies of British sitters and our published catalogues routinely include research on comparative portraits in other collections. Gallery staff also undertake research on works of art in private or institutional ownership for the purposes of the publication of academic research (either online or in books or journals), and also research objects that may be included in future public exhibitions using published and archival sources. This research remains the intellectual property of the authors and may be shared in order to advance scholarly debate either through publication or at the discretion of the individual author.


Enquiry Services

Opinions and Valuations