A portrait of Beyoncé has been acquired by the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery from a photographer named Tyler Mitchell who shot it in his younger days for Vogue’s 2018 September issue. Coincidentally, Mitchell also became the first black photographer to shoot a cover for Vogue.
Leslie Ureña, the associate curator for museum’s photographs said that “This particular work brought us closer to Beyoncé’s words, appearing within the magazine’s pages, and showing us more of the historic shoot.” ARTnews describes this photo as “a glimmering, golden photo of the pop singer, capturing her in an ornate headdress and metallic Valentino dress, leaning against a Grecian column”
While the gallery has acquired its second image of Beyoncé, it is their first time of acquiring image from Tyler. Having acquired the image, the gallery says that they will not be putting up the image for display to the public. The gallery said that it will not immediately be on permanent display but it will take some time.
Now, it is also not revealed what amount was involved in the acquisition of this image as neither Tyler nor the gallery has disclosed any information regarding this.
Tyler wrote an Instagram post saying that “A year ago today we broke the flood gates open. Since then it was important to spend the whole year running through them making sure every piece of the gate was knocked down. And now I’m glad to share this picture is being acquired into the Smithsonian National Portrait Gallery’s permanent collection”. Smithsonian gallery was quick to comment on Tyler’s post saying that “We look forward to adding this new work to our collection! 🐝”