Princess Eugenie says studying Queen's collection sparked love of art

Princess Eugenie says studying one of the masterpieces in the Queen’s Gallery at Buckingham Palace sparked her love of art and helped her to pass her A-Level

  • Princess appears in Sky’s Inside Art: Masterpieces from Buckingham Palace
  • Mother-of-one, 31, treated to a personal tour with its curators when she was 16
  • Tour was when she experienced her first falling in love with art ‘moment’ 

Princess Eugenie has told how studying one of the paintings in the Queen’s collection sparked her love of art – and helped her pass her A-Level.

Appearing in a special episode of the Sky Arts show Inside Art: Masterpieces from Buckingham Palace, filmed at The Queen’s Gallery, the mother-of-one revealed she was treated to a personal tour with its curators when she was 16.

The episode was filmed in December 2020 before the princess gave birth to her son August, whom she shares with husband Jack Brooksbank, as her baby bump is visible beneath her floral maxi dress by British brand ME+EM.

Eugenie, 31, who now works as a director at the Hauser and Wirth gallery, said that tour was when she experienced her first falling in love with art ‘moment’ and began to truly understand its power.

Appearing in a special episode of the Sky Arts show Inside Art: Masterpieces from Buckingham Palace, filmed at The Queen’s Gallery, Princess Eugenie revealed she was treated to a personal tour with its curators when she was 16

She told Inside Art host Kate Bryan: ‘You don’t realise the extent of the masterpieces that are here until you get your education.

‘I did history of art at school, and I learned about these greats that we’re sitting with today.

‘At school, history of art was so exciting because all of a sudden you learn about these incredible works.’

Describing Federico Zuccaro’s Calumny of Apelles, she added: ‘I actually studied a painting from the Royal Collection at school when I was 16.

‘Some of the great people at the Royal Collection showed me around and I chose it. It was the first time I’d really delved into the collection.

Eugenie, 31, who now works as a director at the Hauser and Wirth gallery, said her tour of the Queen’s Collection at the Palace was when she experienced her first falling in love with art ‘moment’ and began to truly understand its power (pictured with husband Jack Brooksbank in 2018)

‘Looking at that painting in this gallery was definitely my first “moment”.’

The daughter of the Duke and Duchess of York described how she studied one of the pieces from her grandmother’s collection during her history of art course at school.

Admitting she had once dreamed of becoming an artist herself, she said all it amounted to in the end was making papier mâché gifts for her parents Prince Andrew and Sarah Ferguson at Christmas and birthdays. 

Speaking about having the opportunity to sit for ‘ages’ in the Queen’s gallery to take in the works, she said: ‘Art has to be about how you understand it and how you feel about it. 

The episode was filmed in December 2020 before the princess gave birth to her son August, whom she shares with husband Jack Brooksbank, as her baby bump is visible beneath her floral maxi dress by British brand ME+EM

Writing on Instagram , Eugenie said it was a ‘privilege’ to speak to Inside Art about the ‘remarkable’ masterpieces from the Buckingham Palace exhibition, which is now open to the public

‘Someone can’t tell you how to feel. You have to look at it and think, “Oh my God, now I’m transported to Venice, or in the fields with the cows”. It’s how you understand it.’ 

Writing on Instagram, Eugenie said it was a ‘privilege’ to speak to Inside Art about the ‘remarkable’ masterpieces from the Buckingham Palace exhibition, which is now open to the public. 

For her appearance in the documentary, Eugenie recycled the ME+EM dress she wore to visit Forest for Change at Somerset House and opted for flat shoes, completing her look with a Wedel Art Collective face mask reading ‘You Me’.

She wore her auburn locks in a loose wave around her shoulders and went for a natural make-up look.

The daughter of the Duke and Duchess of York described how she studied one of the pieces from her grandmother’s collection during her history of art course at school

Eugenie attended Marlborough College – the same school as the Duchess of Cambridge – and achieved As at A-Level in art and English literature, as well as a B in history of art.

She went on to study a combined degree of English Literature, History of Art and Politics at Newcastle University and was awarded a 2:1. 

Eugenie then worked for an online auction firm before taking up her current role. 

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