Museums and galleries have been temporarily closed as a result of the UK lockdown amid the Coronavirus pandemic. However, the National Portrait Gallery (npg) has gone online, meaning that you can still see the historic paintings and beautiful artwork without even needing to leave your sofa.


The selection of rooms available to see online cover a range of different epochs, including the Tudor, 18th century and Victorian eras. My personal favourite is the 17th century gallery which explores artistic growth in a time of great civil and political disruption. Portraits on display include ones by world renowned artists, such as Anthony Van Dyck and Vincent Van Gogh.


Make sure to check out the Lerner Galleries containing a mix of contemporary and temporary exhibitions and displays. Also, the Weldon Galleries, which are on the top floor of the National Portrait Gallery, that, according to the npg, encompass “the Regency under King George IV and up to the death of King William IV in 1837.”


One student, Alaric Hulme, who had visited the National Portrait Gallery prior to its closure told me that “the gallery was fascinating. I loved viewing the plethora of artworks and the range of styles. I was really able to see the world from the artists’ eyes. I especially enjoyed the intricate statues as well, particularly in the Victorian Galleries.”


So if you too are looking for something to do during quarantine or just want a form of escapism, make full use of the online collections and displays available on the National Portrait Gallery’s website.


By Caitlin Mainwaring