The Gallery holds the most extensive collection of portraits in the world. Search over 215,000 works, 150,000 of which are illustrated from the 16th Century to the present day.

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Though not easy to work with, bronze, an alloy of copper and tin, is one of the strongest materials used in sculpture. The most successful method used is casting, where a hollow mould of the sculpture is filled with molten bronze. The lustre and durability of bronze has made it the preferred material for small sculpture that is intended to be picked up, handled. Its tensile strength means that it can be used to create compositions that would need supports if other materials were used.

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King Edward VII
by Sydney March
1924, based on a work of 1901
NPG 2019

Frederic Leighton, Baron Leighton
after Sir Thomas Brock
1923, based on a work of 1892
NPG 1957a

William Blake
after James Deville
1953, based on a work of 1823
NPG 1809a

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Scientific techniques

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Black History Month

Take a tour exploring our Collection created by Alayo Akinkugbe for Black History Month in 2020.

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A Picture of Health

Learn about pioneers in medicine, health and social reform from 1840 to 1920.

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