Tag: paintings

Et tu, Brute?

Posted by Published on May 31, 2017

Feeling stabbed in the back by politics? Villain or revolutionary, some of history’s most colourful characters had two faces. Often appearing next to the most powerful players of all time, traitors and acts of treason can alter the course of history for good or ill. Marcus Junius Brutus (85-42 B.C.) and Nelson Mandela (1918-present) were both considered traitors to their governments, but their bold actions helped to change the…

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Hogarth: A Rake’s Progress

Posted by Published on May 30, 2017

Sex, Booze and Debauchery in 18th-Century London William Hogarth (1697-1764) grew up in the less than salubrious streets around Smithfield meat market in London.  The British artist knew the underbelly of the metropolis from an early age and created a series of paintings satirising contemporary customs. A Rake’s Progress (1733) tells the story of Tom Rakewell, a young man who follows a path of vice and self-destruction. The…

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Do you believe your personality is mapped out in the stars? Read below to check if your zodiac sign rings true and see which artist shares your temperament. First, some background info… Over the course of history every civilization from the Egyptians to the staunchly-Catholic Middle Ages considered astrology to be a legitimate scientific pursuit. Western astrology is believed to have been founded by Ptolemy,…

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Famous Kids, Part II – Royals and Politicians See how many you can guess and if you get stuck or want to make sure you have the correct answer simply click on the image. The quote above each image should give you a clue. Good luck and enjoy!  1   “The important thing is not what they think of me, but what I think of them.”…

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To celebrate the arrival of spring we explore the fascinating history of flowers in art. Medieval Illuminated Manuscripts Surviving illustrated manuscripts provide a beautiful timeline of their aesthetic and decorative evolution. Motifs usually consisted of an illustration or flowers and arabesques. Flowers often carry a symbolic value and this symbolism developed as a way of teaching religious truths. Roses, for example, symbolized the blood of…

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Strong Women in History

Posted by Published on May 22, 2017

A pretty standard answer to the question “Which woman do you most admire?” tends to be “My mother”. Like others, I admire my mum enormously as I do my maternal grandmother, a single mum at the end of  WWII struggling to make ends meet. My mum went back to college once my sister and I were old enough to look after ourselves, and finally found…

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Berthe Morisot: Portrait of an Artist

Posted by Published on May 19, 2017

 Life and work of one of the lesser known Impressionists, Berthe Morisot (1841-95). Manet’s Muse You may not know her name, but it is likely you know her face. Morisot was the model and muse to Edouard Manet, appearing in some of his best known works, including ‘The Balcony’. But Morisot was far more than a model, having established herself as a distinctive and dedicated…

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The Secret Lives of Artists

Posted by Published on April 5, 2017

From the grand studio homes of Victorian artists residing in their suits to the paint splattered studios of Frank Auerbach and Lucian Freud, rare photography archives reveal the creative environment and working practices of artists from the last two centuries.   The Lewinski photo archive Jorge Lewinski, a Polish refugee who served in the RAF, is a foremost photographer of artists in their studios. The…

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A Celebration of Motherhood

Posted by Published on March 23, 2017

For as long as artists have been wielding their brushes, the relationship between a mother and her child has been a foremost theme. To coincide with Mother’s Day, here are some of the most celebrated non-religious mother and child images in the history of art and an exploration of the artists who conceived them.     An Intimate Bond: Mary Cassatt  (1844-1926)  In the late…

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The Queen’s Art Collection

Posted by Published on March 8, 2017

The Royal Collection is the art collection of the British Royal Family and one of the largest and most important art collections in the world, spanning over 500 years of history. Discover stories behind some of the paintings that can be viewed in the royal palaces.   The Nubian Giraffe by Jacques-Laurent Agasse The giraffe in this painting was one of three giraffes given as gifts by…

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