For the first time the National Portrait Gallery opens a display space of prints made from portraits from its collections — which visitors can buy!
Sir Michael Gambon, Robert Powell, Antony Andrews, Steven Berkoff and Tim Piggott-Smith launched the new Print Sales Gallery today. They were part of a group of leading figures from the British stage who recreated the Last Supper in one of the largest portraits, which was recently acquired by the National Portrait Gallery.
Actors’ Last Supper can be bought as part of a limited edition of ten prints for £11,125 unframed (£12,375 framed). If you don’t feel like plashing out a landscape postcard of the portrait can be purchased for £2.99 and a mounted postcard for £9.99.
Conceived by photographer Alistair Morrison who holds over 80 photographs of iconic British public figures in the National Portrait Gallery Collection, Actors’ Last Supper features a select group of actors and directors. Under Morrison’s direction everybody was asked to react to Jesus’ proclamation that one of the disciples would betray him, with Leonardo da Vinci’s painting as the inspiration.
My first two choices were Robert Powell who had to be Jesus, recreating the famous role played in Franco Zeffirelli’s Jesus of Nazareth and Julie Walters, who was asked to play Mary Magdalene (there has been speculation about whether it was Mary Magdalene or John the Apostle who was seated next to Jesus) and they both readily agreed. Their enthusiasm and influence helped to bring together this outstanding group of actors.
Other portraits on view and for sale include Kate Moss by Corinne Day at £25,000, a selection of photographs of Bob Dylan by Barry Feinstein and of 1960s musicians such as The Rolling Stones and David Bowie by David Wedgbury.
The new Print Sales Gallery not only displays high quality prints, ranging from historic paintings to contemporary photography, in both open and limited editions but also for the first time make available prints made from original negatives held in the Gallery’s Archive. Visitors can buy the prints they can see either unframed or the Gallery offers a bespoke framing service using museum-standard materials.
Perry Bushell, Head of Retail, National Portrait Gallery, London, said,
We are absolutely thrilled with our new Print Sales Gallery that allows us to offer our visitors the chance to take home something really special. We have prints from our extensive archives right up to the latest works by contemporary artists. Many galleries offer prints but we are one of the few lucky enough to have somewhere to display them, and our visitors already seem to love it.
The Print Sales Gallery
Floor –3 National Portrait Gallery, London
THE ACTORS’ LAST SUPPER
Left to right: John Alderton, Sir Richard Eyre, Steven Berkoff, Tim Pigott-Smith, Sir Antony Sher, Julie Walters, Robert Powell, Colin Firth, Tom Conti, Sir Michael Gambon, Simon Callow, Peter Eyre and Anthony Andrews.
by Alistair Morrison with Andy Teare and Dean Mitchell
Digital C-type print, 2011 Edition 5/10 £11,125 unframed, £12,375 framed