As our 20th century British rooms are re-hung and Life in Squares hits our screens the Bloomsbury Group seems to be on everyone’s lips!
Visit the Gallery to see Vanessa Bell’s A Conversation with its original frame, painted by the artist alongside works by Duncan Grant, Roger Fry and others.
Established in 1913 by Roger Fry, the Omega Workshops were an experimental design collective.
Well ahead of their time, the Omega Workshops brought the experimental language of avant-garde art to domestic design in Edwardian Britain. They were a laboratory of design ideas, creating a range of objects for the home, from rugs and linens to ceramics, furniture and clothing – all boldly coloured with dynamic abstract patterns. No artist was allowed to sign their work, and everything produced by the Workshops bore only the Greek letter Ω (Omega).
Inspired by their works our Gallery shop has developed a beautiful range of gifts both in-store and online.
From jewellery to scarves, prints to rugs and even award-winning wallpaper you can enjoy the striking bold prints of the Omega Workshops wherever you are.
Visit our shop at:
Or shop online: courtauldshop.com
We have a copy of The Bloomsbury Cookbook: Recipes for Life, Love and Art to give away, with two complimentary tickets to the Gallery.
This beautiful volume published by Thames and Hudson is packed full of illustrations, quotations and nearly 300 recipes.
In July 1913 the Omega Workshops opened to the public. To win, tell us –
What was the London address of the Omega Workshops?
Email your answer, full name and postal address to firstname.lastname@example.org to enter!
Competition closes Thursday 20 August 2015, 10am.Collection, Displays, Shop | Tags: Bloomsbury, competition, Cookbook, Duncan Grant, Omega Workshops, Roger Fry, Vanessa Bell | Leave a comment
The Courtauld’s newest instalment is finally ready and has now been sitting proudly on display for over a week. The Venetian bowl (I have become accustomed to calling it ‘my’ bowl) is small but a lot of time, consideration and work from many people has gone into its display. From Sacha Gerstein’s curatorial eye to Graeme Barraclough’s experience as a conservator, Colin Lindley’s mount-making efforts and many more, the one tiny bowl had a lot of fantastic people working hard behind it, including my own research!
I arrived bright and early on a beautiful sunny day at The Courtauld on the day of the installation. Due to works being carried out on the galleries lifts, the glass case had to be physically carried up the flight of stairs to its new home. However, this was luckily the last hurdle the project had to make before being completed.
After some adjustments to the mount, and the application of new lettering and positioning of text labels, it was time for the bowl to be installed. The chalcedony glass that makes up the bowl has a fascinating quality of glowing bright red when a bright light is shone directly at it. Because of this, we wanted to get the lights in the case at just the right angle to produce some of this for visitors to see.
Another difficulty was how to angle the bowl. The inside of the bowl has a milky pale green colour, nowhere near as beautiful as the swirling patterns on the outside, which is much more interesting to look at, and relevant to the bowl’s history. This faced us with a small problem, because short of displaying the bowl upside down (in which case it would cease to look much like a bowl), one side of the cabinet was going to have a view of the inside of the bowl.
In a last-minute change (quite literally, just minutes before the glass hood was secured into place!) we decided to try turning the bowl round by 90 degrees. It sounds silly, but having the bowl side-on wasn’t something that had occurred to us! This way, both ‘viewing’ sides of the case, where the text panels are, get a brilliant view of the bowl’s exterior.
And with that, we ushered ourselves out of the gallery as the first members of the public arrived for the day.
The whole process of completing the Illuminating Objects internship has been eye-opening to a whole world I had never truly contemplated before. It has been hard work, but also fascinating, and immensely rewarding.
Thank you to everyone at The Courtauld (and beyond) who has given their time and assistance to this project. Special thanks to Sacha Gerstein for her guidance and expertise, and for giving me the opportunity to take part.Categories: Displays, Illuminating Objects | Tags: aventurine, bowl, copper, glass, Illuminating Objects, installation | Leave a comment
The Courtauld Prints and Drawings Room Presents…
SHOWCASE WEEK : Scaled Up
The week of the 15 – 19 June is an exciting time for the Prints and Drawings Room. For one week only the staff have selected five of our most striking works on paper for public viewing, focusing on preparatory drawings used by artists to increase the scale of their works, from the sixteenth to the twentieth century.
Between 1.30pm and 5pm our doors are open without an appointment with each work selected for one day only. Our friendly staff are eager to introduce their chosen works to the public and will be on hand to discuss them and answer questions.
Our Prints and Drawings Study Room Assistants introduce their selection…
Monday 15 June, Rosamund Garrett on Tommaso di Andrea Vincidor’s Head of a Warrior, 1520-35, bodycolour and black chalk, The Courtauld Gallery, D.1975.WF.4775
The bold outlines, simple colour washes and evidence of wear from the loom identifies this profile of a Roman soldier as a rare fragment of a tapestry cartoon. A pupil of Raphael, Vincidor travelled to Flanders at the behest of Pope Leo X in order to prepare cartoons for tapestries to be woven in Brussels.
Drafting full-scale cartoons from initial smaller designs required the artist to be adept at enlargement without distortion, with a thorough understanding of how graphic qualities translate into woven form.
Tuesday 16 June, Tatiana Bissolati on Claude Lorrain’s Arrival of Aeneas at Pallanteum, 1675, graphite, pen and brown ink and bodycolour, The Courtauld Gallery, D.1978.PG.215
This drawing is one of the many Claude Lorrain produced for his painting of The Arrival of Aeneas at Pallanteum. It depicts an episode from Virgil’s Aeneid recounting the meeting of Aeneas with Pallas, son of King Evander at Pallanteum, the future site of Rome.
Combining the use of pen and brush in applying ink, the work has a distinct painterly quality, typical of Claude’s drawings. The graphite lines, probably drawn in the very end, show that the sheet played a role in the design process when the artist reflected on the scale and proportion of the image.
Wednesday 17 June, Bryony Bartlett-Rawlings on James Thornhill’s Decoration of the Dome of St Paul’s, 1715-21, Graphite, pen, ink and watercolour, The Courtauld Gallery, D.1952.RW.2228
The decoration of St Paul’s was the most important ecclesiastical commission from Sir James Thornhill, the main English exponent of Baroque decorative painting. This is an early design for the project, which explores the possibilities of ornamenting a section of the dome with illusionistic architecture.
The broad applications of wash and the low viewpoint allow the artist to envision how this decorative scheme would appear in the final large scale work, to be seen from below, from a distance of over sixty metres.
Thursday 18 June, Rachel Sloan on Pierre Auguste Renoir’s Designs for the decoration of a panel, 1895, black chalk, The Courtauld Gallery, D.1978.PG.244
The figures in classical drapery on this sheet, delineated with rapid strokes of black chalk, represent initial ideas for a set of painted wall panels inspired by Sophocles’s tragedy Oedipus Rex, commissioned by Renoir’s patron Paul Gallimard. Initially trained in the decorative arts, Renoir maintained a keen interest in painted decoration throughout his career.
These studies give insight into how he addressed the challenges of translating a design drawing into a different medium, format and scale, including finding dynamic yet balanced poses that would sit gracefully within the tall, narrow panels.
Friday 19 June, Alexander Noelle on Frank Auerbach’s Study for Oxford Street Building Site, 1957-59, Pencil and red pastel , The Courtauld Gallery, D.2010.XX.2
Auerbach recorded in a sketchbook scenes from the construction sites on Oxford Street in London in the decades following the devastation of World War II. Both the recto and verso of this sheet are covered in notations that describe the colours and details he observed in person.
The numbered red squaring grid was added later in the studio as a compositional tool whilst also easing the process of transfer to a painting surface roughly ten times larger.
We hope to see you there!Categories: Uncategorized | Leave a comment