The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge have seen their first official portrait together during a visit to the Fitzwilliam Museum in Cambridge.
The painting, which was commissioned last year as a gift to the people of Cambridgeshire, shows the couple side by side, with Kate in an elegant emerald green dress and William in a black suit.
It is to be exhibited publicly in the university town.
The portrait was painted by award-winning artist Jamie Coreth, who is described on his website as “one of Britain’s leading portrait artists” who “focuses on the character of his sitters and evokes in his work a sense of their presence”.
The Duke and Duchess, both 40, met Coreth as they viewed the painting of themselves while they were in Cambridgeshire for a series of engagements on Thursday.
William said after looking at the painting, “It’s quite big.”
He told Coreth it was “amazing”.
The Duke and Duchess both studied art history at St Andrews University, although William later switched to geography.
William said in a Big Issue Q&A session released this week to mark his 40th birthday: “I studied a bit of art history at university.
“Had to give it up.
“I kept falling asleep during the lectures. abominable.
“We did a lot of Renaissance, which was incredible.
“But then when we got into modern art, I got a little sleepy.”
The portrait of William and Kate was commissioned by the Cambridgeshire Royal Portrait Fund, held by the Cambridge Community Foundation, as a gift to Cambridgeshire.
Coreth worked to include the city of Cambridge in the portrait, painting the background with the tones and colors of many of the historic stone buildings that represent it.
The portrait also includes the use of a hexagonal architectural motif seen on buildings throughout the university city.
Coreth said it was the “most extraordinary privilege of my life to have been chosen to paint this picture”.
“I wanted to show Their Royal Highnesses in a way that was both relaxed and approachable and elegant and dignified,” he said.
“As this is the first portrait of them together, and particularly during their time as Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, I wanted the image to evoke a sense of balance between their public and private lives.
“The piece was commissioned as a gift for the people of Cambridgeshire and I hope they will enjoy it as much as I enjoyed creating it.”
The public can see the portrait initially at the Fitzwilliam Museum for three years, after which the artwork will be displayed in other community spaces and galleries across Cambridgeshire.
The painting will also be loaned to the National Portrait Gallery for a short time in 2023 to mark the gallery’s reopening.
Luke Syson, Director of the Fitzwilliam Museum at the University of Cambridge, said: “It is incredibly exciting to be the first to show the only double portrait of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge painted to date, and of course in commemoration of their connection to Cambridge through their titles.
“This is a great moment for the Fitzwilliam.”