Display in the Chapter House

I enjoyed my recent visit to Westminster Abbey. One of the things that particularly caught my attention was the painting of Queen Elizabeth II which was displayed in the Chapter House. The artist Ralph Heimans painted the portrait during the Queen’s Jubilee year:

Ralph Heimans (2012)
Oil on canvas

This unique painting of Her Majesty The Queen
standing on the Cosmati pavement in Westminster Abbey
has been purchased by the Abbey thanks to the
generosity of Lord and Lady Harris of Peckham.

This official portrait was painted during the
Diamond Jubilee Year of Her Majesty the Queen

A week after my visit I was quite dismayed to hear that the painting had been vandalised with spray paint.  After reading more of the story I understood why the man did what he did.  The man is a member of  Fathers4Justice (although it was not an official protest) and it was just four days before Fathers day and he would not be able to see his children on that day.

Desperate means lead to desperate measures.  I think he managed to highlight the problem but I think his actions might put some people off the cause.

It is a shame that the paint can was not noticed on entry into the building, during the obligatory bag search.  If a search is necessary (for whatever reason) it should be done properly.

Coronation Portrait

6 Comments CherryPie on Jun 22nd 2013

6 Responses to “The Chapter House”

  1. Claude says:

    This is a decent painting of the Queen. I’m sure the damage will be repaired. At least it wasn’t a Van Gogh or a Chagall. Then I would find it hard to forgive the culprit!

  2. That’s such a wrong way to protest.
    He should just burn down his house or car to make his statement.

    • CherryPie says:

      My view is that if someone destroys something which others enjoy they are likely to alienate people that could otherwise be won over to their cause.

      As you say, statements can be made in other ways!

  3. J_on_tour says:

    Quality picture, with superb light & colours in the choir. Shame about the damage, in the art world that would be considered as violent protesting rather than peaceful.