London – Adam Style

Robert Adam’s London, Sir John Soane’s Museum: 13 Lincoln’s Inn Fields, London WC2, until 11th March 2017

Adam office, drawing made for publication showing the Admiralty Screen, Whitehall, 1759

Adam office, drawing made for publication showing the Admiralty Screen, Whitehall, 1759

It is hard to believe that this is the first time that the work of Robert Adam (proposed and realised) in London has been focused on in a London museum. Whitehall’s Admiralty screen, Portland Place, the Adelphi, Lansdowne House, Buckingham House (now Palace), Kenwood and monuments in Westminster Abbey are among the projects on show.  The Museum has the largest collection of Adam’s surviving drawings.

Adam office, finished drawing showing a funerary monument to Major John André , Westminster Abbey, c.1780-82

Adam office, finished drawing showing a funerary monument to Major John André , Westminster Abbey, c.1780-82

As one contemplates these designs one is reminded how Adam designed complete, detailed schemes for his projects whether exteriors or interiors. I could not but wonder what he would make of these modern-day buildings with their huge expanses of glass which so clearly reveal the detritus of office or domestic living to passers-by and thus lose their aesthetic appeal.

Adam office, finished drawing showing a longitudinal section through the interior of an unexecuted scheme for Lloyds Coffee House, probably on Freeman's Court, Cornhill, c.1772

Adam office, finished drawing showing a longitudinal section through the interior of an unexecuted scheme for Lloyds Coffee House, probably on Freeman’s Court, Cornhill, c.1772

Opening hours: Tuesday to Saturday 10am-5pm. Last entry 4:30pm

Adam office, design for door furniture for 31 Hill Street, c.1777-79

Adam office, design for door furniture for 31 Hill Street, c.1777-79

 

Adam office, design for an unexecuted urban palace for the Earl of Findlater on Portland Place, c.1771-73

Adam office, design for an unexecuted urban palace for the Earl of Findlater on Portland Place, c.1771-73

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

www.soane.org

This January two fairs, one venue:

The Winter Decorative Antiques & Textiles Fair, Battersea Evolution, Battersea Park, London SW11, 24th-29th January 2017  

Pair of Louis XV Painted Bergere Armchairs - Adam Calvert Bentley

Pair of Louis XV Painted Bergere Armchairs – Adam Calvert Bentley

While I am sure that many of you will already know about this exciting regular event I always feel that it is worth reminding you that it is on.  It is a magnet for homemakers, antique collectors and, of course, interior decorators. It is the sort of fair where you find the absolutely perfect thing – which you didn’t realise you wanted until you see it.  Happy purchasing!

 

Wax Seal Tea Caddy - Adam Calvert Bentley

Wax Seal Tea Caddy – Adam Calvert Bentley

http://www.decorativefair.com

 

London Antique Rug & Textile Art Fair, Battersea Evolution, Battersea Park, London SW11, 24th -29th January 2017 

19th Century Kurdish rug from Sauj Bolaq, Kurdistan Brian Macdonald

19th Century Kurdish rug from Sauj Bolaq, Kurdistan
Brian Macdonald

In this welcome move the LARTA Fair moves to the mezzanine floor at Battersea Evolution and makes the perfect combination with the Decorative Fair downstairs.  Visitors will find a good range of collectable decorative rugs, carpets, tapestries, suzanis and embroideries and other textiles. Now that it will be a bigger event than usual there will also be some contemporary designs and a variety of tribal, Islamic and Asian artefacts, including jewellery as well. Don’t forget that the best pieces can be seen online in a ‘virtual fair’ which becomes live when the fair opens.

An early 1800’s Epigonation (in Greek meaning “over the knee”) vestment, worked in silver gilt on a red velvet ground. Marilyn Garrow

An early 1800’s Epigonation (in Greek meaning “over the knee”) vestment, worked in silver gilt on a red velvet ground.
Marilyn Garrow

http://www.larta.net

 

Tom Ellis at the Wallace Collection

The Middle – Tom Ellis at the Wallace Collection, The Wallace Collection, Hertford House, Manchester Square, London, W1, until 27th November 2016

The Middle- Tom Ellis at the Wallace Collection

The Middle- Tom Ellis at the Wallace Collection

This intriguing exhibition starts on this prestigious Museum’s front lawn and then inside occupies the Front State Room and the downstairs exhibition gallery.  The Museum’s own collections have inspired contemporary artist Tom Ellis (b1973) to create these site specific works. His large-scale paintings with their recurring motif of a shoemaker are inspired by work by Teniers the Younger while his furniture is inspired by those 18th century French examples in the Collection which have transformative elements.

Front State Room The Middle- Tom Ellis at the Wallace Collection

Front State Room
The Middle- Tom Ellis at the Wallace Collection

The installation’s title reflects the unresolved nature of the works and the idea that the museum is neither a fully domestic or public space.  The third inspiration comes from the writer Samuel Beckett who was interested in the idea of the unresolved and open-endedness that can be found in art.  Beckett, a frequent visitor to the Wallace in 1935, also shared Ellis’s love of Dutch paintings.

Exhibition Room The Middle- Tom Ellis at the Wallace Collection

Exhibition Room
The Middle- Tom Ellis at the Wallace Collection

http://www.wallacecollection.org

 

Woolley & Wallis in London

Woolley & Wallis, Mayfair Office, Second Floor, 17 Clifford Street, London, W1S 3RQ

Woolley & Wallis - In Mayfair

Woolley & Wallis – In Mayfair

The noted Salisbury firm of auctioneers are opening an office in Mayfair to deal with enquiries from international and London-based clients. They will have special viewings and exhibitions, including one for this year’s Asian Art in London.

Please note it is open by appointment only for which you need to contact the relevant department.

http://www.woolleyandwallis.co.uk

MEET THE CRAFTSMEN

I thought I would share this press release with you:

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MEET THE CRAFTSMEN WHO RESTORED SPENCER HOUSE

27 St James’s Place, London SW1

Sunday 16th October 2016, 10.30am-5.30pm

 

This special Craftsmen Day gives visitors an opportunity to meet conservators, decorators and designers employed during one of the most remarkable restoration projects of the last century.

 On site to explain and demonstrate the techniques and materials will be:

  • Ben Bacon who carved copies of the original suites of furniture designed by Vardy and Stuart.
  • Alan Dodd the artist who recreated the trompe l’oeil effect on the staircase balustrade.
  • Peter Hare & Paul Humphreys of Hare & Humphreys responsible for architectural gilding of the fine rooms and restoration of the decorative plasterwork.
  • David Mlinaric who oversaw for the interior decoration of the State Rooms.
  • Dick Reid who carried out architectural carving, including the doorcases, and the elaborate marble copies of original chimney pieces.
  • Peter Schade who, with Ben Bacon, carved the large frames for the Cipriani and Hamilton paintings in the Great Room, copied from original Stuart frames at Althorp.
  • Peter Thuring, who gilded the copies of the original furniture, and conserved and reupholstered Stuart’s original suite of furniture in the Painted Room, on loan from the V&A.
  • David Wilkinson of Wilkinson plc who produced five Adam-style glass chandeliers.

 

Sunday 16th Oct, 10.30am-5.30pm (last entry 4.30pm)
Advance booking recommended, online at www.spencerhouse.co.uk or  020 7067 1958
Adults £14, concessions £12

BOOK REVIEW: From Chanel to Reves

From Chanel to Reves

La Pausa and Its Collections at the Dallas Museum of Art

Olivier Meslay and Martha MacLeod

Published by GILES in association with the Dallas Museum of Art
PRICE — UK£9.95 / US$15.00
ISBN — 978-1-90780-72-4

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I always find books that tell the story of a house fascinating and such is certainly the case with this appealing book which relates the story of the house that Chanel had built for herself and which she furnished with some help from Bendor Grosvenor, the Duke of Westminster.  It provides a real glimpse into Chanel’s taste and way of life.

In 1953 she sold the Villa La Pausa to Wendy and Emery Reves and included many of the Villa’s furnishings and books and so these were combined with the wide-ranging art collection of the Reves which has an emphasis on Impressionist and Post-Impressionist works.  One figure which crosses into both halves of the story is Sir Winston Churchill who knew the Duke and had met Coco Chanel but was also a regular guest of the Reves at La Pausa and indeed there are four works by him as well as other souvenirs.

Even if you cannot get to Dallas to see this collection I heartily recommend this elegant tome that tells the story so well and so enticingly.

 

http://www.gilesltd.com

http://www.dma.org

Masterpiece London 2016 – Preview

Masterpiece London 2016, The Bull Ring Gate Entrance, South Grounds, The Royal Hospital Chelsea, London SW3, 30thJune – 6th July 2016

Nazy Vassegh, CEO of Masterpiece with J.F. Courville, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer at the RBC Wealth Management 2015 Courtesy Masterpiece London

Nazy Vassegh, CEO of Masterpiece with J.F. Courville, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer at the RBC Wealth Management
2015
Courtesy Masterpiece London

Now in its 7th edition one can easily understand why Masterpiece has become a magnet for collectors and museum curators from around the world.  There is a great emphasis on quality and connoisseurship and the pieces on show reflect more than five thousand years of art history – and yes they are for sale.

Vetting during Masterpiece London 2015 Courtesy Masterpiece London

Vetting during Masterpiece London 2015
Courtesy Masterpiece London

Masterpiece’s chief executive Nazy Vassegh says: ‘I am delighted to announce so many exciting additions to this year’s fair. Masterpiece 2016 will have unrivalled depth and quality, and I am pleased that Masterpiece continues to strengthen every edition. We are looking forward to another great year.’

It truly is a must visit fair and allow yourself plenty of time because there are so many exciting things to see and tempt. Like me you may well want visit more than once.

Vetting during Masterpiece London 2015 Courtesy Masterpiece London

Vetting during Masterpiece London 2015
Courtesy Masterpiece London

Over the coming days I will post varied selections of what is on show.

 

http://www.masterpiecefair.com