Prince Harry and Prince William's beloved oil portrait was removed amid the pair's ongoing public feud. Despite the brothers' spat, London's National Portrait Gallery has an explanation for the piece's disappearance and the coincidental timing, but it's unrelated to the royal family's personal drama.
"Decisions relating to the portraits on display at the National Portrait Gallery are made by the gallery’s curatorial team," a gallery spokesperson said. "With over 250,000 portraits in our collection, we are only able to display a small percentage within our building, however, as one of the world’s largest and most important collections of portraits, we regularly lend and tour our works, both nationally and internationally."
The celebrated body of work is "the first official oil portrait of Prince William and Prince Harry," according to the exhibition's website.
"It represents a unique moment in the lives of the brothers when they were both serving officers in the Household Cavalry (the ‘Blues and Royals’)," the bio read. "They are shown wearing regimental dress uniform and William wears the star and sash of the Order of the Garter, the highest order of chivalry in Britain, founded in 1348, to which he was appointed by Queen Elizabeth II in 2008. The painting conveys what the artist describes as ‘an informal moment within a formal context.’"
William and Harry haven't shown any signs of reconciliation. The Royal Observer previously reported the siblings were barely in contact with one other.
"They are totally estranged. I think that their relationship right now is on absolute ice," royal biographer Tina Brown recently shared in an interview. "The longer Harry dwells on what happened in his life, the more he feels resentment against William, because he feels, I think, that William was even more calculated, essentially, in making him number two, making him the spare, and feel like the spare at all times."
Due to their bond falling apart, William is planning his future coronation, and according to insiders, he has no intentions of extending an olive branch to Harry. "Put it this way: I don’t think anyone expects Harry to get an invite to William’s coronation," an insider revealed in an interview.
"It’s very clear that William and Kate are now extremely important members of the institution, so their view on Harry, which is basically the further away the better, will have to be taken into account," the friend added.
The status of the portrait was reported by OK!.