Queen Elisabeth II Unveils New Portrait in Ireland

The Queen seemed pleased with the painting.

Colin Davidson's portrait of Queen Elizabeth II. Photo by Jeff Spicer - WPA Pool/Getty Images
Colin Davidson's portrait of Queen Elizabeth II. Photo by Jeff Spicer. WPA Pool/Getty Images

The Queen has unveiled a new portrait by Northern Irish artist Colin Davidson at an event for Co-operation Ireland. Her majesty seemed thrilled with her latest likeness.

The reception which took place on Tuesday, November 8, intended to benefit the Co-operation Ireland, which promotes peaceful interaction between Northern Ireland and the Republic of Ireland. The Queen is a joint patron for the charity, as well as Prince Phillip, Northern Ireland First Arlene Foster, and Deputy First Minister Martin McGuinness.

Davidson, who has painted many famous faces including German chancellor Angela Merkel, and Hollywood actor Brad Pitt was honored at the opportunity to paint the British monarch due to what he sees as her positive role in building relationships between Ireland and England.

“This isn’t just my interpretation of the Queen, this is an Irishman’s interpretation of the Queen,” he told the BBC. “I have witnessed over many years the Queen’s actions in advancing healing within the Anglo-Irish relationship. That does inform the weight of the painting and it informs my attitude to it as well.”

Davidson has been working on the portrait since May this year when he traveled to London and made around twenty drawings of the Queen and took countless photographs. He also selected the room in which he would paint the British monarch.

“The drawings tend for me to be really important because they capture what I felt,” Davidson said of his process. “The camera just simply takes a frozen frame. The drawings are used for the likeness and the spirit of the time that we spent together.”

Queen Elizabeth II, unveils her portriat with Martin McGuinness, Deputy First Minister of Northern Ireland, and Frances Fitzgerald, Minister of Justice and Equality Gov of Ireland. Photo Jeff Spicer - WPA Pool/Getty Images

Queen Elizabeth II, unveils her portriat. Photo Jeff Spicer WPA Pool/Getty Images

Her Majesty seemed pleased with the painting which bears a flattering likeness of her face as she appears to look slightly downwards in thought.

“I’m bringing everything that I know about painting to it,” said Davidson “With anybody I paint, it’s a human being in their own right, but with this particular painting I was aware of the gravity and sheer importance and weight which comes with the person I was painting.”

Many artists and photographers have been given the prestigious task of depicting the Queen and British Royal Family—from Mario Testino to Lucien Freud—with varying degrees of success. This work, however, appears to be a winner.


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