There are people who go to Ascot to see the U.K.s best thoroughbreds race and those who go to admire the most whimsical hats on the planet worn by celebrities and anonymous folks alike. Colourful and extravagant looks are almost obligatory for the guests of the Royal Ascot, a truly unique high society sporting event. However, there is one colour that is most emblematic of the racetrack of the Royal Family - the green of the Ascot Greencoat, the ceremonial guard of Her Majesty, who don an elegant green coat with gold trim. It would seem that this tradition coincides with the birth of the racetrack itself, built by Queen Anne in 1711. It is said that, for the occasion, the Sovereign ordered an enormous quantity of velvet from France to dress the Yeoman Prickers, who were in charge of crowd control and would even resort, if necessary, to using their “prickers” to remove racegoers from the track. Yards of cloth were left and it never occurred to Her Majesty to simply discard it - the excess material was used to redo the curtains of Windsor Castle, decking her most prestigious residence outside the Capital in green.
Poussin and Dance. An Outright Celebration at the National Gallery
The French painter as you’ve never seen him before - works on loan from around the world reveal the emotional and Dionysian side of the artist, with influences from classical art and inspirations from the Italian Renaissance.