Enlightened Princesses

Enlightened Princesses: Caroline, Augusta, Charlotte and the Shaping of the Modern World, Kensington Palace, until November 2017

Queen Caroline of Ansbach, Joseph Highmore c.1735,
Royal Collection Trust c Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2017

This fascinating exhibition has come to Kensington Palace from the Yale Center for British Art where it understandably attracted so much interest while there. It considers the part played by three German Protestant princesses at the court of the Hanoverian Kings who ruled 18th century Britain. A legacy that can still be seen in today’s monarchy.

Enlightened Princesses – Installation view
(c) Historic Royal Palaces

The three princesses concerned are Caroline, consort of George II; her daughter-in-law Augusta, who was married to Frederick Prince of Wales and Charlotte (Augusta’s daughter-in-law), consort of George III. In many senses they were the right women in the right place as Britain was embracing the ideas of the Enlightenment and the princesses’ intelligence and curiosity combined with their exalted status allowed them to foster and support the new ideas.

Queen Charlotte, Johann Joseph Zoffany 1771,
Royal Collection Trust c Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II 2017

Scientists, authors and even musicians such as Handel were all drawn to their drawing rooms. They encouraged medical advances such as inoculation and were involved in the establishment of London’s Foundling Hospital. Plants and wildlife were another interest that all three shared and Kew Gardens is part of that legacy. They also supported British trade and manufacturing.

Enlightened Princesses – Installation view
(c) Historic Royal Palaces

The exhibition succeeds in bringing both their private and public world to life.  The Yale Center for British Art’s director Amy Meyers sums it up: “Caroline, Augusta, and Charlotte had sweeping intellectual, social, cultural, and political interests, which helped to shape the courts in which they lived, and encouraged the era’s greatest philosophers, scientists, artists, and architects to develop important ideas that would guide ensuing generations”.

The Flying Squirrel, Plate T-77, Mark Catesby
c The Royal Board of Trustees of Royal Botanic Gardens Kew

www.hrp.org.uk

Christening robe made for future George IV, ivory silk satin c. 1760
(c) Historic Royal Palaces

Masterpiece London 2017 – Introduction

Masterpiece London 2017, South Grounds, The Royal Hospital, Chelsea, London SW3, 29th June – 5th July 2017

MASTERPIECE PRESENTS
Iván Navarro
Impenetrable Room
2017
Courtesy Paul Kasmin Gallery

Since its inception this fair has grown into one of the most must-visit events of the art and antiques year. Some thirty-seven thousand visitors last year! It attracts museum directors and private collectors from all over the world to see the artworks shown by a hundred and fifty international dealers. The artworks range from antiquity to the present time. The Royal Bank of Canada is once again the principal sponsor

This year the new MASTERPIECE PRESENTS will reveal a large-scale dedicated exhibition space at the entrance which has been transformed by a special artwork – Impenetrable Room, 2017. Created by the Chilean artist Iván Navarro it has been commissioned by the New York-based Paul Kasmin Gallery who are new exhibitors.

Over the coming days I look forward to sharing blogs on some of the leading dealers taking part.

www.masterpiecefair.com

A Collectors’ Paradise

‘A Collectors’ Paradise’, Brian Haughton Gallery, 15 Duke Street, St James’s, London SW1, 30th June – Friday 7th July 2017

A Meissen porcelain dish by I Preissler, c 1725-1730 from CHRISTOPHE PERLES

This is a new feature for this busy period of the year when the Art World converges on London for the diverse exhibitions and auctions that make it such an exciting and desirable place to be in June. Taking part are London’s specialist dealers Brian Haughton and Robyn Robb and from Paris Christophe Perles and they will be offering fine examples of English and continental porcelain, pottery and faience.

A fine 18th century Worcester cup exquisitely painted with a Chinese figure holding a fringed parasol, c1752-53 from ROBYN ROBB

haughtongallery.co.uk

http://www.cperles.co

http://www.bada.org/art-and-antiques-dealers/d/robyn-robb/299

A very rare Chelsea asparagus box and cover, c 1755, length 18cm, Red anchor mark and numeral 13 to the interior of the cover from BRIAN HAUGHTON GALLERY

Moments of Pleasure

Juno Antiques – Moments of Pleasure, E & H Manners, 66C Kensington Church Street, W8, 27th June – 1st July 2017

Bristol or Liverpool tin-glazed charger, painted in a Ming Transitional style with a stag and surrounding figures, c.1750-60

Kensington – The Heart of Ceramics features four specialist dealers showing ceramics in Kensington Church Street

One of those taking part is Juno Antiques (Haydn Hansell, Paul McKay and Miles Thompson) who specialise in both 18th century British ceramics and pottery. This year their rather special exhibition celebrates their tenth anniversary. They also stock a good selection of 18th century European pieces as well as glass and enamels. They are certainly to be congratulated on this milestone. 

Rare large pair of hexagonal reticulated Chinese vases and covers, decorated in the London studio of James Giles, c.1750-60

http://www.junoantiques.com/

http://theheartofceramics.com/

Rare Meissen moulded sugar box and cover, painted with chinoiserie scenes reserved on a a ground of blue scales, c.1740

White Ceramics Win!

An Exhibition and Sale: Inspired by Blanc de Chine – The Anthony Collection of White Porcelain, Stockspring Antiques, 114 Kensington Church St, London W8, 7th – 14th June 2017

Mennecy pot-pourri and cover, c. 1750-55

There is something alluring about white porcelain where the only decoration is moulded or applied giving the pieces a sculptural quality and one can quite understand why collectors such as Thelma Chrysler Foy and Mrs Charles Allen Jnr were drawn to it.

St Cloud cups and saucers, left c. 1720-40; right c. 1730-50

Now this exciting collection of more than one hundred and ten pieces of porcelain – Chinese, French, Italian, English and Meissen – dating from c1640 – c1795 gives collectors a great chance to acquire fine examples of this genre.

Meissen coffee pot and cover, c. 1725-30

Garnered over a period of around twenty years the Anthony Collection reveals the influence of Chinese blanc de Chine on European porcelain factories and how these factories then created shapes that were European in origin. It is a fascinating visual feast.

Bow sucriers, c. 1752-54

http://www.antique-porcelain.co.uk

THE 2017 BADA FAIR

BADA 2017, Duke of York Square, King’s Road, London SW3, 15th — 21st March 2017

Joseph Walsh (b. 1979)
Lilium I – A Unique Sculptural Form
2014
Olive Ash
325 x 215 x 74 cm
Courtesy Peter Petrou © Peter Petrou

From the moment you arrive at the BADA Fair you know that you have come to a place which will inspire and tempt you to buy pieces for your home or collection – things which you can live with and enjoy and understand why you acquired them.

An Irish George III white statuary marble and brocatelle marble chimneypiece of Neo-classical design,
Attributed to George Hill and Arthur Darley.
Courtesy of Mallett

The noted firm of Mallett’s are exhibiting there for the first time and as always provide an interesting selection to choose from.

A lantern in parcel-gilt bronze in the Gothic style.
Courtesy of Mallett

It’s hard to believe that this is the twenty-fifth BADA Fair and one feature that has always drawn interest and appreciation is the Loan Exhibition and this year’s is no exception. Entitled Samuel Prout: A Grand Tour in Watercolour it celebrates the life and work of Samuel Prout (1783-1852) from his simple beginnings to achieving the status of being ‘Painter in Water-Colours in Ordinary’ to both King George IV and Queen Victoria. His highly detailed works revealed the cities and towns of Europe to his wealthy compatriots who were once again able to do a ‘Grand Tour’ following the defeat of Napoleon. One can quite understand why his views of Venice are so popular. The exhibition has some thirty works drawn from both private and public collections and has been organised by John Spink of John Spink Fine Watercolours.

Samuel Prout (1783–1852)
Ducal Palace, Venice
Circa 1828
Watercolour with scratching out
69.8 x 101.2 cm
Courtesy John Spink © John Spink

 

www.badafair.com

Garnitures at the V&A

Garnitures: Vase Sets from National Trust HousesV&A Museum, Cromwell Road, London SW7, until 30th April 2017

Set of Chinese porcelain vases, 17th century, Victoria and Albert Museum, London

Set of Chinese porcelain vases, 17th century,
Victoria and Albert Museum, London

This exhibition is a partnership between the National Trust and the V&A and is well worth visiting.

It consists of a mixture of ceramic and silver vases that truly do reflect the wealth and taste of their original owners in the 17th to 19th centuries when the garniture had its heyday. Garnitures usually consist of an odd number of vases which are united by their decoration and they would be displayed symmetrically on mantelpieces, on door cases and on the top of furniture.

Covered pot-pourri vase from Upton House, Warwickshire, soft-paste porcelain, 1762 – 64, Chelsea factory, London, England. © National Trust. Photograph Robert Morris

Covered pot-pourri vase from Upton House, Warwickshire, soft-paste porcelain, 1762 – 64, Chelsea factory, London, England.
© National Trust. Photograph Robert Morris

The first such sets were made up from pieces of Chinese porcelain in the 17thcentury but eventually they were made as sets in both China and Japan and of course from the 18th century onwards by British and European porcelain factories.  The decline in the popularity of garnitures meant that many were split up – a Sevres set from Upton House proves this point – and so complete sets are rare nowadays.

Three-piece ‘Hamilton’ vases from Saltram, Devon, about 1770 – 80, black basalt, Wedgwood and Bentley, Etruria, Staffordshire, England. © National Trust. Photograph Robert Morris

Three-piece ‘Hamilton’ vases from Saltram, Devon, about 1770 – 80, black basalt, Wedgwood and Bentley, Etruria, Staffordshire, England.
© National Trust. Photograph Robert Morris

The National Trust’s External Adviser on Ceramics, Patricia Ferguson, who has worked alongside the V&A’s senior curator Reino Liefkes, said: : “This display promises to change the way you see historic vases; they were almost always designed to be part of a set”.  She is also the author of the accompanying V&A and National Trust exhibition book: Garnitures: Vase Sets from National Trust Houses.

Five-piece chimney garniture from Blickling Hall, about 1804 – 7, soft-paste porcelain, Barr, Flight and Barr factory, Worcester, England. © National Trust. Photograph Robert Morris

Five-piece chimney garniture from Blickling Hall, about 1804 – 7, soft-paste porcelain, Barr, Flight and Barr factory, Worcester, England.
© National Trust. Photograph Robert Morris

vam.ac.uk/exhibitions/garnitures