Meghan Markle undertakes first solo engagement as she visit Oceania exhibition – a year after she went public with Prince Harry relationship

MEGHAN Markle has officially stepped out for her first solo royal engagement, appearing at the Royal Academy Oceania Exhibition preview in London today.

It’s the first time the Duchess of Sussex, 37, has represented the royal family without her husband Prince Harry or his grandmother The Queen by her side.

Meghan Markle has officially stepped out on her first solo royal engagement
©Max Mumby
The Duchess of Sussex’s black dress and heels were both by Givenchy
�2018 Stephen Lock / i-Images

Meghan looked effortlessly elegant in a stunning black Givenchy dress, Aquazzura heels and Givenchy clutch.

And it marks a significant date in her and Harry’s relationship – as today is the one-year anniversary since they appeared at the Invictus Games together in Toronto.

Meghan was pictured with her then-boyfriend in public for the first time on September 25 last year, after quietly dating for a number of months.

They announced their engagement two months later, and the rest is history. So it seems very fitting that exactly one year later, Meghan is taking her royal duties to another level.

It’s been exactly a year since Meghan joined Prince Harry at the Invictus Games – their first public outing as a couple
Getty – Contributor
Their PDAs set tongues wagging, and the happy couple announced their engagement two months later
Getty Images – Getty

The Oceania Exhibition is being held at London’s Royal Academy, and explores art past and present from the Pacific Islands.

It’s exacylu 250 years since Captain James Cook first travelled to the region, as well as 250 years of the RA, making the gallery a fitting venue.

Oceania will be the first ever major display of Oceanic art held here in Britain – and will showcase pieces from indigenous craftsmen spanning a 500-year period, as well as works by Brits who joined Cook on his voyage.

A visitor looks up at the Kiko Moana Collective’s work ‘Mata Aho’ during a press view for Oceania
JONATHAN BRADY
This headdress was created by the Roro people of Yule Island, Papua New Guinea
JONATHAN BRADY
These are two examples of the Akua Hulu Manum, or feathered God images
JONATHAN BRADY
iona Pardington stands between two portraits from a series of life casts
JONATHAN BRADY
A visitor looks at two portraits by Mark Adams of Jim Taofinu’u
JONATHAN BRADY

Lisa Reihana sits in front of her work ‘In pursuit of Venus [infected]’
JONATHAN BRADY

Among the stand-out pieces are a 14th century carving which is one of the oldest known objects in New Zealand, a drawing by the Tahitian priest Tupaia who joined Cook on board the Endeavour, and a seven-metre long Ceremony Feast Bowl from the Solomon Islands, which has never been shown in an exhibition before.

Some of the artefacts shown are considered living treasures by many Pacific Islanders.

Tonight’s event is a preview, held ahead of the official opening on Saturday.

The exhibition will be free for passport holders from New Zealand and Pacific Islands, and runs until December 10. You can buy tickets here.

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