Late last fall the Danish Royal Family revealed their newest family portrait…
It features Prince Christian front in center, symbolic of course for the role he will play in the monarchy’s future as King. Meanwhile the royal grandchildren play with toys on the floor while their mothers, Crown Princess Mary and Marie look adoringly at their youngest. Queen Margrethe and Prince Consort Henrik look straight ahead as do their sons, Crown Prince Frederik and Joachim.
It’s been criticized for its ‘horror-film’ like portrayal, and one can certainly see how one would draw such comparisons. However, it’s being reported that the artist was simply trying to create the portrait as a homage to the 1880 family portrait (pictured below) painted by Lauritz Tuxen. I’m not 100 percent convinced of this, but the similarities are certainly there.
I think what’s most perplexing about this portrait is the way Prince Christian is portrayed as putting his childhood behind him and already assuming the role of King-to-be. It just breaks your heart a little bit, especially when you know it was his own father that was sometimes found in the attic of Amalienborg Palace in Copenhagen sobbing at even the young age of four that he didn’t want to be King. But it’s sadly not the first time a royal has had a tragic childhood, and probably not the last. Knowing the pressures Crown Prince Frederik himself endured, it’s hopeful that he has been of more help to Prince Christian than his Queen mother was to him.