National gallery London

National Gallery

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About National Gallery London

National Gallery is a beautiful art museum in London that displays a great collection of European paintings of Great Britain. Located on the north side of Trafalgar Street, the museum consists of 2300 works that are considered to be the most representative sampling of European paintings across the globe. You will find a comprehensive collection of Italian Renaissance paintings with works of the most famous Venetian and Florentine masters of that period.

The National Gallery also holds great artworks of British, Spanish, French, Dutch, and Flemish painters from the 15th to 19th centuries. The impressive painting of ‘The Sunflowers' created by Vincent Van Gogh is among the remarkable displays of the museum. You can explore the different alleys and watch the portrayal of skills, expertise, and imagination throughout the day.

Some of the highlights from the collection are The Ambassadors, Samson and Delilah, The Madonna of the Pinks, and the Baptism of Christ. Every creation in the National Gallery narrates a different story that will definitely steal your heart. If you are a true lover of art and literature and want to witness the work of renowned European artists, the National Gallery should be your ideal destination. Therefore, the National Gallery is an epitome of beautiful creations made by humans that are the greatest of all times.

Highlights Of The National Gallery

National gallery London
  • Learn about the cultures and traditions of the Western European paintings represented by the artists of late medieval, from Renaissance Italy to the French Impressionists.
  • View the collection of over 2300 works, including the masterpieces like Velazquez’s Rokeby Venus, Van Gogh’s Sunflowers, and Van Eyck’s Arnolfini Portrait.
  • Observe the beautiful painting of The Sunflowers by Vincent Van Gogh that is displayed among the exhibited paintings.
  • Watch the Japanese bridge and the garden of the water-lily pond in The Water Lily Pond painted by the renowned Claude Monet in his garden.
  • Get a chance to have a glimpse of the best British painting, named The Fighting Temeraire, also known as the painter of light.
  • See the gorgeous creation of Leonardo da Vinci and his student in the two versions of The Virgin of the Rocks, representing light and shadow.
  • Embrace a beautiful summer day with a high-contrasting color picture of the rowing boat on the river Seine at the Chateau in the painting, The Skiff.
  • View the expertise and skills of the Dutch painter Johannes Vermeer in the form of the painting, A Young Woman seated at a Virginal.
  • Gaze at the idealistic representation of landscapes in the Seaport with the Embarkment of Saint Ursula painted by Claude Gellee.
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Best Highlights From The Collection

The National Gallery offers a remarkable collection of paintings created by renowned European artists. The highlight of these paintings are the skills and techniques used to create different dimensions and effects on these art pieces. If you are an art lover, you should visit this museum and explore the best highlights from the collection.

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National gallery London
Madame De Pompadour At Her Tambour Frame

Madame de Pompadour at her Tambour Frame is the most organic image portrait of her that eliminates the sturdy formality or mythological trappings of court portraiture found in ancient portraits. During the creation of this portrait, Madame de Pompadour has gained immense popularity by the end of her life.She was a significant leader in applied, fine, and performing arts that had an interest in style and fashion, especially the Rococo style. The objects created around her in the portrait signify her interest in art and literature. After close inspection, it was found that the painting is made up of two canvases. The large full-length canvas is combined with a tinier canvas, including the head, shoulders, and right forearm.

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National gallery London
Samson And Delilah

Another highlight of the National Gallery in London is a beautiful portrayal of the tragedy of love and betrayal, Samson and Delilah. Delilah, Samson’s lover, had been compensated to find the secrets of Samson’s supernatural strength. After finding the secret, Delilah told an accomplice to cut his hair to make him powerless. But, Delilah will someday have to pay for her disloyalty. During Ruben’s visit to Italy, he saw the experiments conducted by Caravaggio in the use of the high-contrasting shades of light and deep, rich color. When he returned from Italy, he used this technique to paint the beautiful portrait of Samson and Delilah for his private collection.

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National gallery London
The Adoration Of The Kings

The Adoration of the Kings is a giant masterpiece, packed with angels, peasants, animals, and royal kings and courtiers, who come to seek blessings from infant Christ. The portrayal also showcases Christ sitting on his mother’s lap in a pristine but ruined building. After the technical analysis of the painting, the amount of time, skill, and effort the artist had put into the painting has been revealed. You can also see the amount of undrawing at some parts and the changes made at different stages by Jan Gossaert. The picture also contains intricate details of virtuoso passages, particularly in the foreground.

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The Ambassadors
The Ambassadors

Hans Holbein’s grand double portrait, The Ambassadors, is a highly accomplished portraitist that portrays the status and wealth of the sitters. The painting dates back to the time when Europe was facing religious upheaval. The array of things on the table in the painting seems to mention discord. This portrait is an extraordinary display of Holbein’s skill in creating images and manipulating oil paint to exhilarate a variety of textures. If you view the painting from an angle, the extended part between the men’s feet becomes a skull. At the top left of the picture, you will find a hidden crucifix that signifies hints at the hope of the redemption of revived Christ.

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The Virgin Of The Rocks
The Virgin Of The Rocks

The Virgin of the Rocks is one of the most mysterious and complex pictures of Leonardo in the National Gallery. The painting showcases the Virgin Mary with an angel, Christ’s cousin, and Saint John the Baptist. All the people have been seen kneeling down to catch a glimpse of the infant Christ, who in turn, takes his hands up to bless them. The surroundings in the painting display a grotto overhung with rocks and dense vegetation. The painting constitutes a giant and elaborate altarpiece created to celebrate the Immaculate Conception of the Virgin Mary for the church of San Francesco Grande, Milan.

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National gallery London
The Supper At Emmau

Painted equivalent to the height of Caravaggio’s fame, the Supper at Emmaus is among the most incredible domestic religious paintings. He beautifully portrays the dramatic climax of the story, i.e., the time when the disciples instantly see what has been put forth along them. Their actions signify their amazement: one throws out his arms in a motion of skepticism, while the other one leaps out of his chair. The sharp lighting of the painting showcases the dramatic intensity of the scene. Therefore, the Supper at Emmaus is one of the fundamental highlights of the National Gallery.

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The Madonna Of The Pink
The Madonna Of The Pink

The Madonna of the Pinks also portrays the subject of the Virgin and the Child. The figures in the picture display all the soft emotions between a mother and a child. You can see the pair sitting in a bedchamber that is located in an Italian Renaissance palace. The exchange of carnations in the picture reflects on the passion and divine love of Christ. The arched window provides a glimpse of the sunny views with fortified ruins clamping to a rocky hill. The intention behind creating this painting is to hold it in hand for prayer and contemplation. In this painting, you will see the reflections of the Benois Madonna painting style that was created by Leonardo da Vinci.

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National gallery London
The Fighting Temeraire

The Fighting Temeraire showcases the final journey of the Temeraire ship towed from the Sheerness on the banks of the River Thames where it is going to be scrapped. This ship was known to play a pivotal role in the Battle of Trafalgar and had been sold by the Admiralty after 40 long years. The artist Turner saw the towing of this ship and recreated the scene imaginatively using modern reports. Located on a blazing sunset backdrop, the last journey of Temeraire offers a great symbol as the life of sail gives way to the life of steam.

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The Baptism Of Christ
The Baptism Of Christ

The Baptism of Christ is the earliest surviving work of the innovative Tuscan painter, named Piero Della Francesca. This artist is renowned for writing the first treatise on perspective. In this painting, he has created objects in proportion so they look like they appear in real life. It lays stress on the landscape depth and harmony of the natural features and figures in it. The painting portrays Christ standing in a shallow and winding stream while John the Baptist pours a tiny bowl of water over his head. On the left side, three angels can be seen witnessing the event in vibrant robes.

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What To Expect In National Gallery

National gallery London
  • The National Gallery houses a vast collection of Western European paintings from the 13th to the early 20th century.
  • The collection of the paintings belongs to great Western European painters, including Leonardo da Vinci, Van Gogh, Turner, Raphael, Rubens, and many more.
  • An aggregate of 2300 paintings is displayed in the National Gallery for visitors.
  • Each of the paintings that narrates the story of Western European culture and shows the consistent quality.
  • Some of the famous artworks at the National Gallery are the Portrait of Greta Moll, The Baptism of Christ, Mary Magdalene, and much more.
  • The eight women artists of the National Gallery portray the story of grandeur and treasure trove of western European paintings.
  • The Yale Center for British Art displays a look at the early public galleries in the United Kingdom.
  • One of Lucas Cranach the elder’s numerous depictions of the fallen pair showcases a brief history of the seven deadly sins.
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Know Before You Go To National Gallery

National gallery London

Location: Trafalgar Square, Charing Cross, London WC2N 5DN, United Kingdom.

Timings: 10 am to 6 pm (Saturday to Thursday), 10 am to 9 pm (Friday)

Best time to visit: The best time to visit the National Gallery in London is during the early hours of the morning. At this time, the place remains quiet and does not have much crowd. Hence, you can explore the gallery and watch the collection of paintings in full capacity without missing any part.

How To Reach: The easiest way to reach National Gallery London is from the Westminster station from platform to street level on the different lines of Circle, Jubilee, and District. After reaching there, you can take the bus services number 12, 24, 88, or 453 to reach your ideal destination.

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Tips To Visit National Gallery

National gallery London
  • Visit the National Gallery in London early in the morning to avoid the crowd and catch a glimpse of the most popular paintings.
  • You should book a timed entrance ticket and plan your visit well in advance to avoid last moment delay.
  • Start your exploration journey from the Sainsbury entrance to move in chronological order and not miss anything.
  • Take an audio guide with you to get a deep insight into the paintings and the artists who have created them.
  • Be considerate towards other guests and wear decent clothing as there may be families in the gallery.
  • Eat your food in the designated areas of the gallery only and not throw the wrappers here and there.
  • Avoid using flash photography inside the premises of the National Gallery.
  • It is advisable not to smoke or drink inside the National Gallery and maintain the decorum of the museum.
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FAQs

What is the best time to visit the National Gallery?

The best time to visit the National Gallery is usually during the early hours of the morning. At this time, the place remains the quietest, and you do not experience much crowd. You can effortlessly head straight towards the gallery and watch the remarkable paintings and other works of art and cover the entire area.

What are the dos and don'ts inside the National Gallery?

Dos:

  • Wear comfortable clothes and footwear as you will need to walk a lot inside the National Gallery.
  • Take an audio guide to learn about the masterpieces.
  • Be considerate towards other visitors.
  • Consume food in designated spaces only. Don’ts:
  • Don’t indulge yourself in flash photography.
  • Don’t touch any of the paintings inside the gallery.
  • Don’t smoke or consume alcohol on the premises of the gallery.

Is photography allowed inside the National Gallery?

No, photography is not allowed inside the National Gallery. However, you can click pictures for personal and non-commercial purposes, and it is the responsibility of the visitors to ensure that no copyright is infringed. A few exceptions are also there to protect copyrights of loans, paintings, individual privacy, and the overall visitor experience.

What are the things to do inside the National Gallery?

There are plenty of things to do inside the National Museum. You can see a beautiful collection of European paintings from 1250 to 1900 that is on the display. Visitors can also learn about different European artists and the way they used their skills to create remarkable masterpieces.

Are backpacks/luggage allowed inside the National Gallery?

Yes, you can carry backpacks inside the National Gallery after a careful inspection by a security professional. However, the bag size policy is enforced to ensure safety and security in the museum. The maximum bag size allowed inside the gallery is 56 x 25 x 45 cm. Moreover, the bags used in baby care and nursing are also allowed on the premises.

Are there any entry tickets for the National Gallery?

Yes, there is an entry ticket for the National Gallery to visit the collection and witness the exhibitions. You can also save much of your time by booking the ticket online.

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