Portrait artist Katherine Galbraith has taken advantage of an outstanding opportunity at the National Gallery of Art and others should, too.
Established in 1941, the National Gallery of Art in Washington, D.C., has hosted a tantalizing program for artists that allows them the opportunity to sketch and paint directly from the gallery walls. The Copyist Program “offers a unique opportunity for artists to study the techniques of old masters through intimate study in the galleries,” its website reports. “The museum’s trustees decided that a program should be established to allow artists to copy the museum’s masterpieces, not only for their own benefit but to help make these works available beyond the museum’s walls. Since the program’s inception, more than 8,000 permits have been issued to copy paintings in the Gallery.”
Artist Katherine Galbraith has been one of the artists to pass the test, and has greatly enjoyed her experiences with the art — and museum-goers. After passing an FBI background check and receiving her permit, Galbraith is allowed exclusive access to the gallery’s works — an invaluable experience for an artist.
To learn more about this program, visit the National Gallery of Art.
This article was featured in Fine Art Today, a weekly e-newsletter from Fine Art Connoisseur magazine. To start receiving Fine Art Today for free, click here.

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Andrew Webster is the former Editor of Fine Art Today and worked as an editorial and creative marketing assistant for Streamline Publishing. Andrew graduated from The University of North Carolina at Asheville with a B.A. in Art History and Ceramics. He then moved on to the University of Oregon, where he completed an M.A. in Art History. Studying under scholar Kathleen Nicholson, he completed a thesis project that investigated the peculiar practice of embedded self-portraiture within Christian imagery during the 15th and early 16th centuries in Italy.


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