The Art Fund completes its UK tour of Queen and Country with a four-month display at the National Portrait Gallery
. Created by official war artist and Turner Prize-winner Steve McQueen, Queen and Country takes the form of a large cabinet containing a series of facsimile postage stamp sheets bearing portrait heads of soldiers who lost their lives in the conflict in Iraq between 2003 and 2009.
Queen and Country was created by Steve McQueen in response to a visit he made to Iraq in 2003 following his appointment by the Imperial War Museum's Art Commissions Committee as an official UK war artist. Queen and Country was also commissioned by Manchester International Festival.
During the six days McQueen spent in Iraq, he was moved and inspired by the camaraderie of the servicemen and women that he met. The display will open on the seventh anniversary of British troops entering Iraq, and will close in July to coincide with the first anniversary of the withdrawal from Iraq.
Steve McQueen will talk to Adrian Searle, chief art critic of the Guardian, about Queen and Country in a special Artist in Conversation event at the National Portrait Gallery on Thursday 25 March. The conversation will consider the role of the war artist in the setting of a modern conflict, and explore Queen and Country in the wider context of McQueen's work.
A Queen and Country book produced by the British Council in association with The Art Fund, Imperial War Museum and Manchester International Festival will be published as the display opens at the National Portrait Gallery.