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The Latter-day Saint who painted King Charles III and Queen Elizabeth II

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Arnold Friberg talks about his painting “The Finding of Infant Moses” during an exhibit in Utah in March 2006.

Arnold Friberg talks about a painting he did titled “The Finding of Infant Moses” during a media preview tour of the new exhibit at the Utah Cultural Celebration Center in West Valley Thursday, March 16, 2006.

Jason Olson, Deseret News

This article was first published in the ChurchBeat newsletter. Sign up to receive the newsletter in your inbox each Wednesday night.

Many Latter-day saints know Arnold Friberg for his muscular portraits of Book of Mormon scenes.

Fewer know that he was a painter for the late Queen of England.

And its new King.

Friberg was commissioned to paint a portrait of King Charles III in 1978, back when he was Prince Charles and still had decades to go until he became king.

Friberg and his wife, Heidi, lived in Buckingham Palace for six weeks, when the painter took photos and made sketches. Then they returned to Utah, where Friberg finished the painting, “His Royal Highness Prince Charles on Centenial.”

Well, almost finished.

When it was time to display the painting in Canada for the first time, Friberg wasn’t quite done. He took some good-natured ribbing from Prince Charles about that, according to the Nauvoo Times.

Centenial, by the way, was the great-grandson of the famed racehorse Man O’War, and initially was named Centennial. Queen Elizabeth II, who died on Sept. 8 after 70 years of reign, dropped one of the n’s in the horse’s name some time after the Royal Canadian Mounties made the horse a gift to her.

In 1988, the Mounties commissioned Friberg to paint the queen on her horse.

Friberg returned to Buckingham Palace and unveiled the painting, “Elizabeth II Regina,” in 1994, according to the Deseret News.

The painting is nearly 5 feet tall and 8 feet wide and shows the queen astride Centenial in a country setting.

Friberg, in addition to Book of Mormon paintings and work for Cecil B. DeMille’s epic motion picture “The Ten Commandments” — for which he was nominated for an Oscar — also created nearly 300 paintings of Mounties.

He is the only American who has ever been made an honorary member of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police.

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