Skip to main content

National Portrait Gallery images

This blog post from the Scottish Visual Arts Group alerted me to the fact that it was possible to use images from the National Portrait Gallery for non-commercial purposes.

Going to the Advanced Search area of the website, it's possible to perform a search for the profession of the sitter/subject of the portrait. So, of course, I decided to have a look and see what the librarians of the past look  like. After all, today, we're apparently all female, frumpy, and middle aged.

Of the 72 people whose profession was described as "librarian", only 7 were female librarians*. The rest were be-whiskered, elderly white gentlemen of a certain class, with some amazing names: Arundell James Kennedy Esdaile; Luxmoore Newcombe; Harry Tapley Tapley-Soper; Charles Talbut Onions...

Of the 7 female librarians, only one is actually the sole subject of the portrait: the rest are group photographs of National Portrait Gallery staff from various eras, staff of other bodies, or a painting of a group.

So here you go: the rare sight of a portrait of a female librarian! I give you...Alda von Anrep!

Record page at NPG

Yes, it's not exactly a stereotype-busting look, but hey, she's all we've got!


*The full list is: Adla von Anrep; Rosemary Evison; Emma Floyd; Nicole Mendelsohn; Constance-Anne Parker; Lousa Fentham Todd, and Valeria Vaughan Batson.

Comments

Koralimba said…
That's so wonderful! I didn't know they had an online database. Thanks for posting about it.

Popular posts from this blog

Library words

Putting words about libraries and books onto posters is very popular, so there's all sorts of options out there. These items are here because they have a quote or slogan about libraries or books printed on them. There's one quote in particular that seems to be a favourite of poster makers: see if you can spot which one it is.... Library bird (ok, it's a magnet, but hey...) Print Print Print Print Digital printable Hand-lettered quote Print Linocut block print Vinyl wall sticker Print Letterpress print Digital printable Print Print Linocut print Print Print

Mini Christmas gifts

Miniature things are one of my favourites, and miniature books are no exception. These tiny books are available either as volumes or sets of volumes on their own, or as parts of dolls house or in specialised miniature library settings. And some of the miniature libraries are just insanely good! I've not included here the many options of wearable miniature books - earrings, necklaces, bracelets, badges... A book with its own drawer for safekeeping Mini clay books Decorative mini books Ghosts in the library books Not exactly miniature, but very small "Little Leather Library" collection How about a Medieval illuminated book, in miniature? Or one with a secret compartment? There are even illustrated erotic mini books! You can theme by colour! Dollshouse insta-library (including 50 Shades of Grey, and the Hunger Games trilogies) Miniature haunted library Miniature Victorian library Still one of my favourites: themed mini

The library look - part two

Continuing the theme of art featuring libraries and librarians...let us pick up again where we left off.... In the rural library Shields library Original life portrait Library lion Birds nest In the library browsing Library freak Book lover At the library Library love Library gal Book lovers Read with me Book store girl Bath reading room Owls going to the library Sometimes, some other animals manage to creep into the library... Reading bear Bookworm