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London

National Portrait Gallery

Exhibition Detail
Hidden: Unseen Paintings Beneath Tudor Portraits
St Martin's Place
London WC2H 0HE
United Kingdom


January 3rd, 2013 - June 9th, 2013
Opening: 
January 3rd, 2013 10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
 
Sir Francis Walsingham possibly after John De Critz the Elder ,
Sir Francis Walsingham possibly after John De Critz the Elder ,
16th century (circa 1587)
© Courtesy of National Portrait Gallery
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TAGS:  
portrait
COST:  
Room 3: Free
> DESCRIPTION

Recent technical analysis undertaken as part of the Making Art in Tudor Britain project has revealed that some of the Gallery’s sixteenth-century portraits were painted over pre-existing paintings. This could have occurred for a variety of reasons and provides fascinating insight into artistic production during the period.

This display highlights two rare examples in which paintings with religious iconography have been discovered beneath portraits. Images generated by analytical techniques such as x-radiography and infrared reflectography are used to reveal the hidden paintings, and the portraits are also paired with loans from other collections to give an impression of the underlying compositions. The display also includes an interesting portrait with a fragment from a decorative scheme on the reverse, which suggests that it was originally intended to be viewed from both sides.


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