A STRIKING collection of contemporary royal portraits from the National Portrait Gallery is in York as part of a season-long display at the National Trust’s Beningbrough Hall, Gallery and Gardens.
Royals: Then and Now features work by internationally renowned artists and photographers including Andy Warhol, John Wonnacott, Chris Levine and Mario Testino.
One of the highlights on show is the first public display of Prince George of Cambridge’s official christening portrait by Jason Bell.
It will take pride of place in the Visiting Portraits Gallery alongside the official engagement portrait of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge taken by Mario Testino.
The display will also feature a range of portraits of the Queen, including a quartet of Andy Warhol’s pop art silkscreen prints hanging in the grandly ornate baroque saloon and a holographic close-up by Chris Levine, called Lightness of Being.
Levine’s portrait was taken while the Queen was resting her eyes between shots for another portrait that required her to pose still for eight seconds per shot.
The resulting image showing the Queen with her eyes closed led to the piece fast becoming one of the iconic royal images of the 21st century.
Beningbrough Hall’s general manager, David Morgan, said: “This year’s display in partnership with the National Portrait Gallery means we are able to bring some of the most sought after and culturally important pieces of royal portraiture from the national collection to Yorkshire.
“We are a unique National Trust property offering a historic hall, art gallery, garden and parkland for our visitors to enjoy and hope that this exciting and fascinating display will be something that they enjoy as part of their day with us.”
• The display runs until November 2.