Britain’s Foreign Office unveiled a new portrait of Queen Elizabeth II by artist Miriam Escofet. On this occasion, after having become fond of video conferences during confinement, the Queen participated in a video conference to verify the result of an order.
Via a ‘Zoom’ session, The Queen attended the presentation. The Permanent Under Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs and Head of the Diplomatic Service, organized the virtual presentation with the artist.
The Queen saw her portrait for the first time from her computer screen. The painting took 7 months to be created. With a smile of approval, Queen Elizabeth has marked another first during her reign in lockdown – the unveiling of a new royal portrait via video call.
The painting features the monarch sitting in a golden chair and wearing a blue dress and pearl jewellery inside the White Drawing Room at Windsor Castle.
The work was commissioned by the FCO to create a “lasting tribute to Her Majesty’s service” to diplomacy. The Queen sat twice for the portrait by Escofet, who was born in Barcelona but has spent most of her life in the UK, and won Britain’s most prestigious prize for portraiture in 2018.
Parts of the painting were inspired by Hans Holbein’s The Ambassadors and the anamorphic distortion technique developed by Renaissance painters, which was used by Escofet with the intention of creating a “slightly surreal” element to the image and to make it more “intriguing for people to stumble upon,” the artist explained.
The painting took seven months to complete, with the final stages finished in lockdown.
After pulling the cloth down, the artist said the Queen “smiled and looked very pleased”.
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