The First Art Newspaper on the Net Established in 1996 United States Monday, December 29, 2014


National Portrait Gallery reunites portraits of King Henry VIII and Catherine of Aragon after 500 years
King Henry VIII, unknown Anglo-Netherlandish artist, c.1520, © National Portrait Gallery, London.
LONDON.- Henry and Catherine Reunited places portraits of King Henry VIII and Catherine of Aragon together for the first time in nearly 500 years. The pictures will be on show from today (Friday 25 January) at the National Portrait Gallery, London. The rare early portrait of Catherine of Aragon has been placed on loan from Lambeth Palace and has undergone an extensive programme of research and conservation treatment prior to its display.

During a research visit to Lambeth Palace staff from the Gallery’s conservation and curatorial department noticed a portrait hanging in a private sitting room. The portrait depicted a woman in costume which dated from the 1520s to 1530s. The sitter had previously been identified as Henry VIII’s last wife Catherine Parr. However, the facial features and costume shared more similarities with known works depicting Henry VIII’s first wife Catherine of Aragon. The other striking element of the piece was its rare original engaged frame (a frame that was constructed around the panel support for the portrait before it was painted).

The Archbishop of Canterbury and the Church Commissioners generously allowed the Gallery to borrow the portrait for further research, including technical analysis. Examination of the painting in raking light indicated that it originally had a patterned background. Further analysis showed that it would be possible to remove the black over paint from the background to reveal the original green finish which imitates damask silk; the National Portrait Gallery’s portrait of King Henry VIII c. 1520 shares a similar brocade background. An X-ray indicated a veil attached to Catherine’s headdress and it became evident that a large amount of over painting had altered the characterization of the sitter’s face. This research confirmed the re-identification of the portrait as Catherine of Aragon, and also underpinned the subsequent conservation treatment of the painting.

Examination of the frame revealed that elements of the original decorative finish survived beneath layers of later paint and gilding. The discovery of the original Tudor finish is an extremely rare find. It combines oil gilding with coloured bands of blue and red which were painted with the pigments azurite and vermillion. A large proportion of the original finish was recovered enabling the National Portrait Gallery’s conservation team to reconstruct the areas of loss and damage. The restored colour scheme adds to the aesthetic reading of the painting.

The portrait was compared with the National Portrait Gallery’s painting of Henry VIII from the same period which is a similar composition. Whilst not suggesting the works originally formed a pair, the costume dates them to the same period and the works are of the same scale. It is likely that both are examples of the type of portraits of the king and queen that would have been produced in multiple versions, some of which would have been paired in this way.

This research was undertaken as part of Making Art in Tudor Britain, a project which has used scientific techniques to analyse the portraits in the display to increase the understanding of the working practices of Tudor artists.

Dr Charlotte Bolland, Project Curator at the National Portrait Gallery, London says: ‘It is wonderful to have the opportunity to display this important early portrait of Catherine of Aragon at the Gallery. Henry VIII and Catherine of Aragon were married for nearly twenty four years and during that time their portraits would have been displayed together in this fashion, as king and queen of England.’

This painting was identified as a part of the major five year research project Making Art in Tudor Britain. This project is supported by: AHRC, British Academy, John S Cohen Trust, Esmée Fairbairn Foundation, Idlewild Trust, Leche Trust, The Leverhulme Trust, The Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art, The Mercers’ Company, PF Charitable Trust, Marit and Hans Rausing Charitable Foundation and an anonymous donor.

Henry and Catherine Reunited is on display in Room 1 from 25 January 2013, admission free





Today's News

January 25, 2013

Mexican archaeologists find complex panel of 1,000 year-old petroglyphs in Nayarit

Getty Research Institute launches database of German art sales records from 1930-1945

Surrealism and the art of drawing is the subject of a major exhibition at the Morgan Library & Museum

National Portrait Gallery reunites portraits of King Henry VIII and Catherine of Aragon after 500 years

Inez & Vinoodh open first exhibition of photographs with Gagosian Gallery in Paris

After searching several locations, Romanian police still looking for art stolen in Dutch heist

Top lot in Bonhams 19th century sale makes over double the pre-sale estimate

Moscow Museum of Modern Art opens first major retrospective of Olga Tobreluts

First retrospective of Indian-born printmaker Zarina spans five decades of her career

Masterpiece London appoints independent art advisor Nazy Vassegh as Chief Executive

Five masterpieces return to The Hague after going on a successful travelling exhibition in Japan

Exhibition focuses on spirit of innovation and collectivity in new Finnish photography

Emperor's treasured miniature up for auction at Bonhams New York during Asia Week

Bonhams to sell original of world's most reproduced fine art print: "Chinese Girl" by Tretchikoff

Steve McQueen Chevrolet Styleline leads exciting list of celebrity rides at Auctions America sale

The San Diego Museum of Art announces the acquisition of Pedro de Mena's San Diego

Clark Atlanta University Art Galleries present exhibition of selections from The Cochran Collection

The Gallery at Norwich University of the Arts presents recent works on canvas by Avis Newman

Witness From Baghdad: Halim Al Karim's on view at Artspace London

Photorealism Revisited opens at the Oklahoma City Museum of Art

Fourth Annual Collectors Evening secures four new acquisitions for the High Museum of Art

Most Popular Last Seven Days



1.- Colossal statue of Amenhotep III unveiled on the west bank of the Nile in Egypt

2.- British royals crown New York visit with gala dinner

3.- Missing artwork rediscovered in "Stuart Little" sells for over 200,000 euros at auction

4.- Rossetti's Venus Verticordia soars at Sotheby's in London to sell for £2.88 million

5.- Russian magnate buys, then returns Nobel prize to American geneticist James Watson

6.- Egyptian Museum unveils four newly renovated halls of the famed Tutankhamun gallery

7.- 'The Secret of Dresden: From Rembrandt to Canaletto' on view at the Groninger Museum

8.- Cooper Hewitt Smithsonian Design Museum reopens after three-year renovation

9.- More than 200 queries about works by possible heirs received on Nazi-era art hoard

10.- Attorney, artist and filmmaker reflects on the seven lessons learned at 2014 Art Basel Miami Beach



Museums, Exhibits, Artists, Milestones, Digital Art, Architecture, Photography,
Photographers, Special Photos, Special Reports, Featured Stories, Auctions, Art Fairs,
Anecdotes, Art Quiz, Education, Mythology, 3D Images, Last Week, .

 

Founder:
Ignacio Villarreal
Editor & Publisher: Jose Villarreal - Consultant: Ignacio Villarreal Jr.
Art Director: Juan José Sepúlveda Ramírez - Marketing: Carla Gutiérrez
Special Contributor: Liz Gangemi - Special Advisor: Carlos Amador
Contributing Editor: Carolina Farias

Royalville Communications, Inc
produces:

ignaciovillarreal.org theavemaria.org juncodelavega.org facundocabral-elfinal.org
Founder's Site. The most varied versions
of this beautiful prayer.
Hommage
to a Mexican poet.
Hommage
       

The First Art Newspaper on the Net. The Best Versions Of Ave Maria Song Junco de la Vega Site Ignacio Villarreal Site