Thomas Chippendale 1718-1779

Thomas Chippendale 1718-1779: a celebration of British craftsmanship & design, until 9th June 2018, Leeds City Museum

Free admission

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Chippendale Exhibition Leeds City Museum 2018

It is with a deep chagrin that I very belatedly write about this major exhibition celebrating this great English furniture maker and designer. I had hoped that I would have been able to visit Leeds to see the show but personal reasons intervene.

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Chippendale Exhibition Leeds City Museum 2018

There is no better place than Leeds to see this show as Chippendale was born just down the road at Otley in 1718 – I well remember seeing the commemorative sign there when I lived in Leeds many years ago. I hope that this selection of images will entice you to dash up to Leeds or look at the tercentenary website where many of the houses associated with his oeuvre are mentioned.

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Chippendale Exhibition Leeds City Museum 2018

I shall be reviewing the catalogue published to celebrate this tercentenary and exhibition and also writing about Wilton House where Chippendale furniture bought by the Earls of Pembroke is highlighted in a special publication.

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Chippendale Exhibition Leeds City Museum 2018

 

 

http://chippendale300.co.uk/exhibition/

Cecil Beaton at Wilton

Cecil Beaton at Wilton, until 14th September, 2014

East Front of Wilton House  ©Wilton House Trust

East Front of Wilton House
©Wilton House Trust

This exhibition is a celebration of Cecil Beaton’s friendship with the Pembroke family whose ancestral home is Wilton House. From attending his first ball there in 1927 (he was thrown in the river) to a birthday lunch in January, 1980, just three days before his death, he photographed and recorded the lives of three generations of the family. Beaton lived nearby firstly at Ashcombe and then at Reddish.

Cecil Beaton in “All the Vogue”, Cambridge, 1925 © The Cecil Beaton Studio Archive

Cecil Beaton in “All the Vogue”, Cambridge, 1925
© The Cecil Beaton Studio Archive

The photographs from Sotheby’s Cecil Beaton Studio Archive reveal a world of pageants, costume balls and country house parties and show Beaton’s flair for creating fancy dress and mis-en-scène. So it is no wonder that as well as being a celebrated photographer for Vogue and Vanity Fair, he would win Oscars in the cinema and Tony awards in theatre for his designs.

Alice von Hofmannsthal, Ashcombe,1937, in her Costume for "The Gardener's Daughter" for "The Anti Dud Ball" at the Dorchester Hotel, 13 July 1937 © The Cecil Beaton Studio Archive

Alice von Hofmannsthal, Ashcombe,1937, in her Costume for “The Gardener’s Daughter” for “The Anti Dud Ball” at the Dorchester Hotel, 13 July 1937
© The Cecil Beaton Studio Archive

He was fortunate in that he was able to combine his personal life with his artistic pursuits and so we in our turn can enjoy it in this new exhibition space at Wilton. The stylish show is designed and curated by Jasper Conran.

Wilton House Cecil Beaton © The Cecil Beaton Studio Archive

Wilton House Cecil Beaton
© The Cecil Beaton Studio Archive

The Countess of Pembroke in her Robes for the Coronation of George VI, 1937 © The Cecil Beaton Studio Archive

The Countess of Pembroke in her Robes for the Coronation of George VI, 1937
© The Cecil Beaton Studio Archive

Lord Pembroke says: “There is a strong family connection with Cecil Beaton and although I was too young to remember him, my mother and older sisters certainly have very fond memories of him here at Wilton.

The images that have been chosen are fascinating both as social history and also for their technical brilliance. Beaton was a genius when it came to studio photography, but he also excelled at capturing spontaneous shots of pure joy.

Lady Plunket (Dorothé) and Mr Maurice, 1937 © The Cecil Beaton Studio Archive

Lady Plunket (Dorothé) and Mr Maurice, 1937
© The Cecil Beaton Studio Archive

I hope that the exhibition gives as much pleasure and inspiration to visitors as it has to us.”

Rex Whistler, 1927 © The Cecil Beaton Studio Archive

Rex Whistler, 1927
© The Cecil Beaton Studio Archive

http://www.wiltonhouse.co.uk

Palladian Bridge at Wilton House ©Wilton House Trust

Palladian Bridge at Wilton House
©Wilton House Trust