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.

Advanced Collection search


A type of glue which comes from many types of tree and plant. It is a by-product of oil; a treacle-like substance that solidifies with the addition of a hardener and an accelerator. Resin is insoluble in water and in art it is used as an ingredient in varnishes. Today, it is one of the new materials used in sculpture, along with silicone rubbers and glass fibres. Resins allow for cold casting, whereas traditional casting methods need heat. In the past soft resins from living trees have been used as well as hard fossil resins such as amber. Clear resin can have objects embedded in it and can be painted.

Page 1 OF 1
Page 1 OF 1


Our channel

View a wide collection of video content on our YouTube channel from past projects to our latest films.

Sit back and watch

Artist and sitter interviews

Get insights into creating portraiture from BP Portrait Award 2020 artists and their sitters.

Explore behind the scenes

Sleeping Awake

Watch our film created to say ‘goodbye’ to the Gallery before we closed for our major transformation project.

Hear our story