The Duchess of Cambridge visited Margate in Kent as part of her patronage with the National Portrait Gallery. She carried out two official engagements – one at the Turner Contemporary art gallery and the second at Resort Studios.
The first engagement took place at Turner Contemporary, a contemporary art space on the Margate seafront. According to their website, “Turner Contemporary is a catalyst for the regeneration of Margate and East Kent, already welcoming over 1.4million visits.” They are touted as one of the UK’s leading art galleries.
Kate’s visit to Turner Contemporary was centered around a formal viewing of Van Dyke’s last self portrait. TC’s Self exhibition features self portraits throughout the centuries – the pre-selfies, if you will. The exhibition poses the questions: “In a world where ‘selfies’ have become everyday expressions and ‘Britishness’ is being redefined, what is the role of self-portraiture and how has it shifted through the history of art to the present day?”
Most of the portraits are on loan from the National Portrait Gallery, of which Kate is a patron. The Duchess of Cambridge became the official royal patron of the National Portrait Gallery in January 2012 – one of her first patronages as a royal.
Kate has had numerous engagements with NPG, including a formal gala where she wore the Nizam of Hyderabad necklace – that stunning diamond statement necklace, loaned from The Queen. The Duchess of Cambridge’s official portrait by Paul Emsley also hangs in the National Portrait Gallery in London. The Duchess viewed the Van Dyke Self Portrait in February of 2014. Today, she viewed it again along with the 100+ other self portraits.
During her visit, she met with staff and volunteers of the Turner Contemporary. Following the Self exhibition, she viewed Blank Canvas’ Mr Lion exhibition. Blank Canvas is described as “an intergenerational group based at Turner Contemporary. The group brings together people of all ages to share, ask questions, be curious, support each other, inspire, imagine and embrace the unexpected through art.” The Duchess of Cambridge also visited Turner Contemporary’s Clore Learning Studio. She met with local children who use the studio for art projects and extracurricular activity. She met with staff and supporters of the Clore Learning Studio and attended a brief reception.
Before departing the museum, the Duchess of Cambridge greeted the hordes of fans who waited all morning to see her. Despite running late for her next visit, Kate took the time for a walkabout to greet the locals who braved the cold for Her Royal Highness!
Following her visit at Turner Contemporary, the Duchess of Cambridge traveled to nearby Cliftonville. She visited Resort Studios, a community facility for local artists.
According to their website: Resort is a collective of creative professionals located in Margate, Kent. When we founded Resort Studios in 2013 our vision was to create a space that encourages experimentation and collaboration in an inspiring and professional environment. We aim to support practitioners at different levels of their careers, providing access to resources that can help reduce costs, generate income and enhance individual practice. At Resort Studios, Kate viewed an exhibition featuring photographs of local community members. She met with the artists to learn more about their project. She also met with volunteers and artists.
The Duchess of Cambridge looked very artsy in her Hobbs dalmatian print coat – we saw the coat previously during her pregnancy with Prince George. The coat originally retailed for £169, but has long since sold out.
Kate accessorized with her trusty Anoushka pearl drop earrings. She chose her Stuart Weitzman “Power” pumps and Mulberry clutch to complete the look – both in black suede.
Kate’s love and passion for the arts was evident on today’s event. She truly enjoyed herself today. We look forward to seeing her tomorrow at Downton Abbey!
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