The Queen has been presented with a gift of 97 works on paper by the Royal Academy of Arts to celebrate the Diamond Jubilee. The portfolio includes prints, drawings, photographs and works in oil, watercolour and mixed media, contributed by 93 Academicians. The gift has been added to the Royal Collection and will go on display at The Queen’s Gallery, Buckingham Palace next autumn. Some of the most high-profile Academicians are represented in the portfolio, including, Tracey Emin, David Hockney, Anish Kapoor, Cornelia Parker and Grayson Perry among others.
The gift was presented to The Queen last month by the Royal Academy’s President, Christopher Le Brun, and its Secretary and Chief Executive, Dr Charles Saumarez Smith. Mr Le Brun, whose work The Complete Journey, is included in the portfolio, said, ‘The Royal Academy of Arts is delighted and honoured to present a unique portfolio of works by current Royal Academicians to Her Majesty The Queen, commemorating the Diamond Jubilee. The near 100 works document the breadth and depth of the Membership, with all categories included: Painters (including Engravers, Printmakers and Draughtsmen), Sculptors and Architects. After an outstanding year for the Royal Academy, the Diamond Jubilee gift represents a key highlight of 2012, and we are looking forward to the public display of the works in 2013.’
Charles Saumarez Smith said, ‘We are delighted to be giving this portfolio of works to The Queen for Her Diamond Jubilee. We are proud of our royal heritage and feel privileged to be able to mark this historic occasion.’
Jane Roberts, Librarian and Curator of the Print Room, Royal Collection Trust, said, ‘The generous gift from the Royal Academicians to celebrate The Queen’s Jubilee is yet another highlight in this wonderful celebratory year. It is hugely exciting to be adding this magnificent body of contemporary graphic art to the Royal Collection. Our preparations for the exhibition in London next year are already well under way, and we look forward to working with the Royal Academy on that important project.’
Appropriately, the Royal Academy gift of works on paper will go on display next autumn alongside an exhibition of drawings and prints by Giovanni Benedetto Castiglione (1609-64), perhaps the most innovative and technically brilliant draughtsman of his time. The Genius of Castiglione and The Royal Academy Diamond Jubilee Gift will be at The Queen’s Gallery, Buckingham Palace from 1 November 2013 to 16 March 2014.
The Royal Collection Trust, part of the Royal Household, is responsible for the care of the Royal Collection and manages the public opening of the official residences of The Queen. Income generated from admissions and retail activity is dedicated to The Royal Collection Trust, a registered charity, and is used for the conservation of the Collection and the promotion of access and enjoyment through exhibitions, publications, loans and educational activities.
The Royal Collection is among the largest and most important art collections in the world, and one of the last great European royal collections to remain intact. It comprises almost all aspects of the fine and decorative arts, and is spread among some 13 royal residences and former residences across the UK, most of which are regularly open to the public. The Royal Collection is held in trust by the Sovereign for her successors and the nation, and is not owned by The Queen as a private individual.