Prince Albert (1819-61)
Hand-coloured daguerreotype of a portrait of Prince Albert Half length portrait, seated and turned to right. His hands rest together and he wears a jacket and waistcoat. Taken when the Prince was aged 29 and commissioned by him.
The daguerreotype was an early form of photography in which a unique, positive image was captured on a highly polished silvercoated copper plate. Some daguerreotypes, like this portrait of Prince Albert, were then hand-coloured to create images of startling immediacy. The Prince was an early enthusiast for the medium and probably first encountered it in 1842, just three years after the process was announced to the public by its inventor, Louis Daguerre.
Text adapted from Victoria & Albert: Art & Love, London, 2010