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Monday 11th March, 2002 - 09:00 GMT
Suffolk artist unveils portrait of the Queen
HRH Queen Elizabeth II
A section of the new portrait of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II. View the full portrait »

A Suffolk artist has unveiled her portrait of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.

The portrait was commissioned by The Commonwealth Secretariat to mark Queen Elizabeth's Golden Jubilee.


bullet pointChinwe Chukwuogo-Roy

bullet pointGolden Jubilee

bullet pointCommonwealth Day

bullet pointCommonwealth Secretariat

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What will you be doing to commemorate the Golden Jubilee?


Artist unveils portrait
View the full portrait
The three studies
Chinwe Chukwuogo-Roy: A profile
The Commonwealth
The Golden Jubilee

Nigerian-born artist Chinwe Chukwuogo-Roy was chosen from a shortlist of five other artists. She is the first black artist to have been commissioned to paint The Queen.

Chinwe Chukwuogo-Roy paints HRH Queen Elizabeth
The artist Chinwe Chukwuogo-Roy painting the portrait of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II
Photograph: Douglas Atfield.

After five sittings at Buckingham Palace, the portrait was completed in Ms Chukwuogo-Roy's studio in Suffolk in January 2002

Ms Chukwuogo-Roy, who lives near Wickham Market, spoke of her experience meeting The Queen:

How did you get the chance to paint this portrait of the Queen?

Ms Chukwuogo-Roy: It came as a complete surprise. When I was painting the portrait of the last Commonwealth Secretary General, out of the blue he said, 'Would you like to put in your portfolio for a commission to paint a portrait of the Queen?'
I thought, I can't be hearing right and he had to repeat it. I put in my application and was chosen out of five other people to do it.

How did you feel when you heard you had been selected?

Ms Chukwuogo-Roy: It was such an honour.
The Secretary General told me himself and for some reason I had my son there and when he told me I was wild with excitement, I was so happy. My son describes it best, he says I rugby tackled everyone in the room!

It is a real responsibility painting Her Majesty did you feel a little bit nervous?

The artist Chinwe Chukwuogo-Roy painting the portrait of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.
The artist Chinwe Chukwuogo-Roy painting the portrait of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II
Photograph: Douglas Atfield.

Ms Chukwuogo-Roy: I was quite nervous but decided to put it out of my mind.
I saw her five times at Buckingham Palace, lots of long walks down the corridors.

She is very good at putting you at your ease. When I went it dawned on me that the Queen would walk in the door and I thought, what do I do? I don't even know how to curtsey so I started to practise.

I put one knee down, then I thought that's not right so I tried the other one. Then I thought there must be a camera in this room, so someone must be watching me so I stopped. But the minute she walked in she was so fantastic she said, 'Oh hello, we've met before. I unveiled your portrait of the Secretary General,' and so on.

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