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Prince & Patron at Buckingham Palace

Representing the SDC Christine Dove and Tori McLean receive a private invitation to the opening of Prince & Patron at Buckingham Palace

20 July 2018

This summer visitors to the State Rooms at Buckingham Palace will see a special display of over 100 works of art personally selected by The Prince of Wales to mark His Royal Highness's 70th birthday year. The exhibition Prince & Patron at Buckingham Palace opens on Saturday, 21 July.

Christine Dove (SDC Chair) and Tori McLean (SDC Trustee) received private invitations to a special evening preview event.  The exhibition displayed a sumptuous range of paintings, decorative arts, works on paper, furniture and textiles from the Royal Collection and the work of artists supported by three of The Prince's charities – The Royal Drawing School, The Prince's Foundation School of Traditional Arts and Turquoise Mountain.  It was a wonderful evening and an absoloute priveledge to be able to move freely around and sit down in the state rooms.  Champagne flowed freely among the many artistic guests and charity members which created a lively atmosphere and a hot bed of discussion over the artistic endevaours on display, which did not disappoint.

The Prince's interest in art developed while growing up surrounded by the Royal Collection.  From the works collected by His Royal Highness's ancestors, The Prince's selection includes 16th-century portrait drawings by Hans Holbein the Younger that belonged to Henry VIII; Georges de la Tour's painting Saint Jerome, c.1621–23, acquired by Charles II; and a tiger's head in gold and rock crystal(1785–93) from the throne of Tipu Sultan, ruler of Mysore in India, presented to William IV.

Two oil sketches of The Prince and The Duchess of Cornwall by Eileen Hogan from His Royal Highness's personal collection are seen together publicly for the first time.  Commissioned by The Prince in 2016 and 2017 respectively, they both depict Their Royal Highnesses seated at desks in Birkhall, their private residence in Scotland.

To celebrate the 70th anniversary of the Battle of Britain in 2010, The Prince commissioned a series of drawings of veterans by alumni and faculty members of The Royal Drawing School.  Four drawings from The Last of the Few series are included in the display, including Stuart Pearson Wright's portrait of Flight Lieutenant WLB Walker AE, who was then the oldest surviving pilot from the battle.

In June 2018 His Royal Highness visited the final degree show of The Prince's Foundation School of Traditional Arts and selected Hannah Rose Thomas's three portraits of Yezidi women for the Prince & Patron exhibition.  The paintings, in tempera with gold leaf on panel, are of women who escaped ISIS captivity and reflect His Royal Highness's support for the Yezidi community.

At the centre of the Palace's Ball Supper Room is a striking 2.3-metre-high cedar wood pavilion created by classical carver Naseer Yasna (Mansouri) and the woodwork team at Turquoise Mountain.  The pavilion's intricate carvings draw on the rich heritage of Afghan design and demonstrate how the charity is reviving traditional skills in historic communities.

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