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The Cambridges

Duchess of Cambridge uses her Art History degree to curate National Portrait Gallery’s Victoria Giants exhibit

As patron of the National Portrait Gallery, the Duchess of Cambridge will be visiting on 28 February.

The gallery is hosting the Victorian Giants: The Birth of Art Photography exhibition which the Duchess will view. Many of the works will be familiar as the Duchess herself selected the images accompanied by written personal captions.

The exhibition catalogue also includes a forward by Kate where she writes: “These photographs allow us to reflect on the importance of preserving and appreciating childhood while it lasts,

“Children held a special place in the Victorian imagination and were celebrated for their seemingly boundless potential. This notion still rings true for us today.”

While at the gallery, the Duchess will meet supporters and lenders in the Ondaatje Wing Main Hall. This is the first time portraits by Oscar Rejlander, Lewis Carroll, Julia Margaret Cameron and Lady Clementina Hawarden will be shown together.

According to a press release from Kensington Palace, the artists “embody the very best in photography of the era, experimenting with new approaches to picture making, and shaping attitudes to the medium that have informed artistic practice ever since. The exhibition explores the birth of art photography in England and provides a fresh perspective on one of photography’s formative periods.”

The National Portrait Gallery’s head of photography Phillip Prodger said in a statement: “Here visitors can see the birth of an idea—raw, edgy, experimental—the Victorian Avant-Garde, not just in photography, but in art writ large.”

Speaking to the Evening Standard, Nicholas Cullinan, director of the National Portrait Gallery said he was happy the Duchess “supported this exhibition in such a direct and personal manner.”

Adding: “will be a rare opportunity to see the works of all four of these highly innovative and influential artists.”

During her time at the University of St. Andrews in Scotland, the then Kate Middleton studied Art History. She graduated in 2005.