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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Online index and preliminary list

Before the correspondence and papers of Philip de László were transferred to the Gallery in 2005 they were digitised and over the last five years they were indexed in depth by the de László Archive Trust.  The names of correspondents and recipients have been fully indexed, together with keywords, portraits, exhibitions and sitters.   Additionally, the Trust has summarised letters written in English and translated those written in other languages.

The index and scanned copies of the correspondence are contained in a separate database that can be consulted in the Heinz Archive and Library

Full text and multiple-term search capability across the entire database is not yet possible at the Gallery but the Archive and Library is looking for additional funds to enable this in the future.

A preliminary list of the archive, arranged by series, provides basic information about the contents of each folder: 

Personal correspondence 1892-1937 (26 folders)

Family correspondence 1921-36 (2 folders)

Hungarian and German correspondence 1893-37 (10 folders)

Spanish, Portuguese and Italian correspondence 1894-1936 (1 folder) and US correspondence 1927-8 (1 folder)

Court (royal) correspondence 1895-1916 (2 folders)

Studio (portrait) correspondence 1891-1937 (46 folders)

Press cuttings 1915-33 (15 folders)

Exhibition correspondence 1920-36 (12 folders)

Selected letters, mainly royal correspondence, 1898-1935
Removed from the above series before the papers were transferred to the National Portrait Gallery (1 folder)

Visit From Your Armchair

Self-portrait as My Father from the series Encounter  by Silvia Rosi © Silvia Rosi

Taylor Wessing Photographic Portrait Prize

An online exhibition celebrating the very best in contemporary portrait photography.

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Hold Still

Hold Still

Explore our community photography project, which presents a personal record of the UK during lockdown.

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Margaret Thatcher by Spitting Images Productions Ltd painted plastic, 1985

Sculptures in 360°

See sculptures and fascinating objects from our Collection from all angles.

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David Hockney: Drawing from Life

Watch highlights from our special exhibition, which had to close early in March 2020 due to lockdown.

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