Banned Painting of Queen Elizabeth II Finally On Display After 60 Years

All because the Queen's neck looked weird -- oh, and the fact that it looked nothing like her.

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JOHN STILLWELL / REUTERS

Britain's Queen Elizabeth records her 2012 Christmas message in 3-D from the White Drawing Room of Buckingham Palace

Nobody seems to like the first official portrait of Kate Middleton. Detractors say the painting makes Her Royal Highness the Duchess of Cambridge look old and drab — but at least it wasn’t banned for half a century because it made her neck look weird.

That’s what happened to a 1952 painting by John Napper, now finally on display after more than 60 years, according to the Telegraph. Liverpool councillors had commissioned Napper to paint a portrait of Queen Elizabeth II for her coronation, but their complaints about his work — namely, an exaggerated neck and the fact that it looked nothing at all like the Queen — led them to ban the painting from public view.

Trustees of St. George’s Hall announced Thursday that they’re bringing the portrait back out of storage to celebrate the Diamond Jubilee, the 60-year anniversary of the Queen’s coronation that kicked off globally last year. Forget about it being hidden from the masses — Liverpool’s Lord Mayor Gary Millar says some Brits will have no choice but to view the notorious work of art.

“It will be the first thing people will see if they come to get married or have a civil partnership or attend a citizenship ceremony,” he told the Telegraph.

Back in 1952, Napper apparently was quite understanding about both the debacle and his work’s lack of royal likeness, acknowledging it was “a beautiful painting of a queen, but not this Queen.” Fortunately, he got another chance: his second painting, featuring Queen Elizabeth with a normal-sized neck, now hangs in the Liverpool town hall.

The Queen has sat for 129 portraits in her life, and not all of them have been pretty. In 2001, artist Lucian Freud painted what became one of the most controversial depictions of the Queen that, uh, certainly accentuated her features. Some called it “thought-provoking and psychologically penetrating.” Others called it “a travesty.” Her Majesty’s verdict? Buckingham Palace does not comment on portraits of the Queen, but we imagine the evil eye she’s giving in Freud’s painting is probably some indication of her opinion of the work.

12 comments
andersonian83
andersonian83

Quite amazing we have witnessed in most of the occasion some historical paintings and clips which are banned for certain reasons are overcome from a very controversial issues. In the above article we have found an old and very attractive painting of Queen Elizabeth II which is now appears after 60 years.

http://www.moebiusdigital.com/

MisterP69
MisterP69

It is a ridiculously out of proportion painting. It should have been shredded.

The person in the portrait has the proportions of a matchstick with a tiny little head on top.

ChristyPem
ChristyPem

I don't know about anyone else but the next time I have my portrait done the artist will have to submit the results of a recent eye exam with his portfolio.  

WilliamBarnes
WilliamBarnes

As a portrait artist I think it's a beautiful (young) rendering of the Queen. At least it's a stunning picture of a gorgeous young lady decked out in a fabulous gown with such a fantastically long and elegant neck (Where did it go, did she get it fixed, or did her wardrobe designers find some way to hide it (THE NECK) during all these years ooppps!) Lady Gaga should definitely consult her costume designer about any shockingly absurd possibilities which could make people gape at her even more than they already do. I KNOW it's already been done, but I'm sure that SHE could come up with something new, controversial and bizarre (like putting it on upside down). BUT...that Katie girl's somber and sinister portrait, even though showing off her lovely complexion makes me shiver. You can nearly make out her mother-in-law's endearing countenance peering over her shoulder. BRRRRRRRRRRRRR! Talk about left-overs!

RichardLewis
RichardLewis

 Is this how low quality  our news is getting?

I didnt realise so many people were sycophants......Why do we care so much about a wealthy land owning family who got rich off the hard work and sacrifice of the poor over hundreds of years

Its very odd behaviour

iownfrodo
iownfrodo

I SEE no portrait.  What a stupid article.


WilliamBarnes
WilliamBarnes

@iownfrodo The picture is hidden in the "now finally on display" link you will see in the second paragraph. Just click on the words and it'll come.

JohnGwazdosky
JohnGwazdosky

This painting makes Kate not look like the beautiful Kate we all know. Suggest this artist use number style painting, this try in my opinion is terrible.