Friday, 31 July 2009

NPG Buys Cato

The National Portrait Gallery has lashed out £178,500 on this portrait of actor John Philip Kemble as Cato (1812) by Sir Thomas Lawrence, of which £55,000 was contributed by The Art Fund. The artist was so pleased with this 8ft-tall portrait that he refused to let the original buyer have it back and hung it in his own front room to advertise his skills. The work has been in private hands ever since and has only been on public display once, in 1983. It will feature in a major exhibition of his work at the National Portrait Gallery in the autumn of 2010. One to watch out for.


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