More select art I enjoyed from my 2010 trip to London:
From Apsley House:
–Sèvres Egyptian Service from the dining room at Apsley House
From the Number One London blog:
The Sèvres Egyptian Service was commissioned by Napoleon for his Empress Josephine. The vast silver Portuguese Service, with an 8 metre long centrepiece, adorned the table at the annual Waterloo Banquet, a great event at which the Duke entertained officers who had served under him at Waterloo and in the Peninsular War.
From the British Museum:
It’s not just language software.
From the National Gallery:
—Surprised!, Henri Rousseau, 1891, oil on canvas, 129.8 x 161.9 cm
From the museum website:
This is the first of the jungle scenes on which Rousseau’s fame chiefly depends. This painting was exhibited at the Salon des Indépendants in 1891 with the title ‘Surpris!’. It was later described by the artist as representing a tiger hunting explorers.
Rousseau claimed that he had gained knowledge of the jungle while serving as a regimental bandsman in Mexico in the 1860s, but this seems to be a fiction and his paintings were probably inspired by visits to the botanical gardens in Paris and by prints. The figure of the tiger may have been based on a print after a pastel by Delacroix.
From the National Portrait Gallery:
—Arthur Wellesley, 1st Duke of Wellington, John Francis, 1852, marble
If you haven’t noticed, I really admire Wellington.
From the Museum of London:
From the Tate Modern:
—The Kiss, Auguste Rodin, 1901-1904, Pentelican marble,
1,822 x 1,219 x 1,530 mm, 3,180 kg
From the caption:
The Tate’s The Kiss is one of three full-scale versions made in Rodin’s lifetime. Its blend of eroticism and idealism makes it one of the great images of sexual love. However, Rodin considered it overly traditional, calling The Kiss ‘a large sculpted knick-knack following the usual formula.’ The couple are the adulterous lovers Paolo Malatesta and Francesca da Rimini, who were slain by Francesca’s outraged husband. They appear in Dante’s Inferno, which describes how their passion grew as they read the story of Lancelot and Guinevere together. The book can just be seen in Paolo’s hand.