The National Portrait Gallery commissions a small number of portraits every year as part of its commitment to collecting portraits of those who have made an important contribution to British history and culture. Over the last thirty years, it has commissioned some 180 portrait paintings, sculptures, drawings and works in mixed media as well as many photographs. These portraits now form the backbone of the contemporary displays.
Information about the commissioning process, including choosing a subject, working with the artist and creating the resulting portrait.
The commissioning programme which is intended to supplement rather than replace other forms of collecting