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Blackpink goes to Buckingham Palace

26 November 2023

Introducing Rakewell, Apollo’s wandering eye on the art world. Look out for regular posts taking a rakish perspective on art and museum stories.

Rakewell has become quite accustomed to the pomp and circumstance that surrounds St James’s Park. Gold carriages and guardsmen rehearsing for ceremonial occasions are something of an everyday affair in this part of London. However, last week, when the flagpoles on the Mall were being draped with the South Korean flag – preparing for an official visit by the South Korean president – your roving correspondent did feel a flutter at the imminent arrival of some really distinguished foreign guests.

King Charles III talks to Blackpink about the pressures of monarchy. Photo: Victoria Jones/POOL/AFP

For once, Rakewell was not disappointed. His Majesty King Charles III may have hosted only his second state banquet last week, but the real excitement was the presence of Blackpink in the area. In the morning, the all-conquering K-Pop quartet became honorary Members of the British Empire (MBEs), but they demonstrated their true quality in the evening, as Rosé, Jennie, Lisa and Jisoo strolled through the Palace like the self-reliant princesses they are. Your roving royal correspondent couldn’t help recalling that each Blackpink member is an ambassador for a different French fashion house (Lisa for Celine, Jennie for Chanel, Rosé for Saint Laurent and Jisoo for Dior). Might not a similar arrangement be possible for the four nations of the United Kingdom?

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