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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Specially developed downloadable PDFs, audio and web-based resources to support school-based learning around portraiture and the Gallery’s exhibitions and the Collection.

Family Activities: Playful Portraits front cover

Family Activities: Playful Portraits

Draw and make while discovering more about the Gallery’s Collection and these brilliant people.

Get creative

Mo Mowlam (detail) by John Keane © National Portrait Gallery, London

Interviews with artists and sitters

Explore how contemporary portraits were realised through interviews with artists and sitters, talking about the portrait process.

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Lucian Freud (detail) by Lucian Freud © The Lucian Freud Archive / Bridgeman Images


Investigate and study a variety of portraits in different media from our collection through a series of resources organized thematically. Art techniques, Image and Identity, Portrait Photography, the Practice of Portraiture and Webquests.

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Queen Elizabeth I (detail) by Unknown English artist © National Portrait Gallery, London


Discover more about our collection and learn to read portraits as historical evidence.

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Benjamin Zephaniah (detail) by Donald MacLellan © Donald MacLellan


Discover the faces of poets working today. Explore how photography and portraiture can enhance and shape poetry learning.

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Harry Stopes-Roe; Marie Stopes (detail) by Bassano Ltd © National Portrait Gallery, London


Discover ideas and lines of enquiry for how portraiture can support citizenship teaching in your classroom.

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