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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Cardboard panels of paper pulp, or combined with wood or cloth, have been used as painting supports (surfaces) since the sixteenth century. Like millboard, strawboard and hardboard, they are practical and cheap, light in weight and have a variety of textured surfaces. Boards can be painted on direct but are usually primed first with a ground such as gesso or an egg emulsion.

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James Drummond, 4th Earl of Perth
after John Riley
based on a work of circa 1686
NPG 2153

Count Albert Mensdorff-Pouilly-Dietrichstein
by Philip Alexius de László
before 1907
NPG 5396a

Princess Victoria of Wales
by Philip Alexius de László
NPG 5396

Roger Fry
by Ray Strachey
late 1920s or early 1930s
NPG D215

Leslie Hurry
by Leslie Hurry
circa 1943
NPG 5421

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Do, draw and make!

Do, draw and make!

From building dens to food faces – enjoy our Playful Portraits activities and find out about some brilliant people!

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Healthcare Heroes

Activities for children and families inspired by three healthcare heroes from our Collection.

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Learning resources

Downloadable and web based resources to support learning at home linked to art, history, citizenship and literacy.

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