To commemorate the Diamond Jubilee in 2012, the National Portrait Gallery (London) will show sixty images of the Queen in a landmark exhibition that chronicles sixty years of Elizabeth II’s reign from Sir Winston Churchill to the present day.
The Queen: Art and Image is an important survey of how artists have interpreted Royal subject matter through commissioned and informal images. It includes a diversity of perspectives on the way her image as a person and as the monarch has been appropriated and manipulated by artists and the mass media.
Focussed on the theme of 'representation', the works are accompanied by ephemera and film footage offering a flavour of the times in which the portraits were completed. This context helps understanding of the often turbulent times in which Elizabeth has reigned and how perceptions of Royalty and its role have changed over the decades
Notable exhibits include Pietro Annigoni’s 1969 commission for the National Portrait Gallery, Lucian Freud’s 2000-01 portrait from the Royal Collection and Justin Mortimer’s unorthodox work where the Queen’s head floats away from her body.
Photographers represented include Annie Leibovitz, Dorothy Wilding and Cecil Beaton, including his iconic Westminster Abbey Coronation image. Rob Munday and Chris Levine’s holographic portrait Equanimity (2004) is also shown.
The exhibition runs at the National Portrait Gallery, London, until 21 October 2012.
Photograph: Equanimity. A work co-created by Rob Munday and Chris Levine / Courtesy Jersey Heritage Trust. For more on the making of this image see: www.rob-munday.com