A new drawing contest by a well-known British illustrator is drawing the attention of collectors, artists and collectors to the country’s art scene.
The drawing contest, which runs until Aug. 19, features more than 100 entries and prizes of up to $100,000.
“It’s not just an auction for pieces that have sold, it’s for pieces we may never get a chance to see,” said Elizabeth M. Maclean, executive director of the British Art Museum.
“It’s a celebration of the creativity of our country.”
The prize-winning artwork is from a new series by Lady byung, a former member of the Queen’s family.
The painting is titled “My Queen, My King” and depicts Queen Elizabeth II at a reception for the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh at Windsor Castle in 1952.
The drawing contest was launched in 2016 by British artist and illustrator Elizabeth Maclean and the British Library in London.
MacLean said the first drawing contest featured the Queen in 1952 and is a favorite of collectors and art lovers.
“I’ve always had a fascination with the monarch, and the Queen is one of my favourite figures,” she said.
“This is a very beautiful piece that I can’t wait to see the final result.”
The drawing competition is the brainchild of the artist and the Library’s collection manager, Anne MacNeill, who was an artist and curatorial assistant for Maclean’s grandfather, Edward Maclean.
MacNeill said the idea for the drawing contest came from a desire to “show the breadth and depth of the collections in our collection.”
“The idea was always to get a sense of who we are as a collection and to showcase our collection,” she told The Associated Press.
“There are some great collections that we have in the public domain and this was an opportunity to showcase the breadth of our collection and highlight it for people who might not be aware of what our collection is.”
MacNeill said it was a challenge for MacLean and her husband, David Maclean of Kingston, Ont., to draw the Queen for the first time.
“When we first started thinking about the idea of the drawing competition, we were a bit hesitant to get the Queen as an official member of our family because she’s not really a household name,” she explained.
MacLean said they have received lots of requests to do the drawing and have received a lot of positive feedback.
“A lot of people have said it’s just wonderful and a wonderful illustration,” she added.
Maclean said her grandfather, the late Edward MacLean, a painter, sculptor and engraver, commissioned the painting in 1952 to honor the Queen at the coronation of her mother Queen Victoria.
MacLeod said it took years for the artist to complete the drawing.
“The Queen has been a source of inspiration to many generations of artists,” she noted.
“We are very fortunate that the Queen has remained a part of the culture and that her portrait continues to resonate with generations.”