Lectures 2017/2018 Membership YearLectures start at 11.00am with coffee from 10.15am and are held (except in August and December) at Victoria Hall, Oakham201826 AprilSuzanne Fagence CooperPioneering Women PhotographersFrom the earliest days of photography, women claimed this new art for their own. This lecture offers a new vision of the Victorians, seen through the lenses of pioneering women. Above: Photo by Julia Margaret Cameron.Left: WW1 Photograph taken by war photographer Olive EdisIt includes the intimate fantasies of Clementina, Lady Hawarden; the soft-focus story-telling and images of Empire made by Julia Margaret Cameron; and radical portraits captured by the Suffrage campaigner Olive Edis.More on Julia Margaret CameronMore on Lady HowardenMore on Olive Edis24 MayHilary GuiseMarc Chagall and the supremacy of BlueNo synopsis yet.Background on Marc ChagallMarc Chagall, 'The Green Donkey' 191128 JunePatsy Erskine HillThe British at the Court of the TsarsSpies, Merchants and Adventurers… Before the eighteenth century, foreigners were feared as unholy, and very few had ever entered Russia. In 1700, however, Russia needed help: Peter’s army was a disorganized rabble with no military tradition and no discipline; he had almost no coastline, and thus no navy; his countrymen were illiterate and fearful of progress. Foreigners were hired in to help in all these fields, and British merchants became increasingly numerous. Later, when Russia became a world power, it attracted ever-growing numbers of tourists and adventurers, lured by its exoticism, tales of stupendous aristocratic wealth, and sometimes, its remoteness from the long arm of British justice. Above: Ivan IV of Russia Shows His Treasury to Jerome Horsey (Alexander Litovchenko, 1875)English house in MoscowEnglish Silver at the Court of the TsarsBackground to trade between Russia and BritainBackground of the London Muscovy CompanyThere is no lecture in July.23 AugustLecture and Summer Lunch (the lecture is included in your membership). We hope you will join us for our Summer Lunch afterwards, there is an additional cost for the lunch.Elizabeth MerryTown Mouse, Country Mouse: Art and Nature in the work of Beatrix PotterThe only daughter of well-off parents, Beatrix Potter’s childhood was spent in almost complete seclusion in West London. The ordered formality of the household made no concessions to the demands of children, so Beatrix and her brother Bertram created their own absorbing creative world upstairs in the nursery and schoolroom. Inspired by summers spent in Scotland and the Lake District, she became a passionate amateur naturalist, drawing, painting, dissecting and examining whatever flora and fauna she and Bertram could smuggle back into the London house. By the time she was a young adult, still living at home, unmarried and still very much under the jurisdiction of her parents, her watercolour paintings of botanical and zoological subjects were meticulous, detailed and accomplished. She could undoubtedly have become a professional botanist – indeed a paper of hers on the spores of Fungi was read out at the Linnaean Society of London in 1897, but because she was a woman her theories were dismissed. It was with the creation of Peter Rabbit that Beatrix Potter’s private world became the key to her future independence; and those unique and exquisitely illustrated little books have ensured her place among the Immortals of children’s literature. Beatrix Potters web site27 September Thomas Chippendale the Younger and George BullockJanusz Karczewski-SlowikowskiAfter Chippendale’s death in 1779, his eldest son, also named Thomas, carried on his cabinet-making business until 1804. Chippendale the Younger & George Bullock were brilliant designers and skilled craftsmen. Their original and stylish furniture designs belong to the later neo-classic styles of the late 18th and early 19th centuries. Chippendale Jr. died in 1822 at the age of 73 but Bullock died aged 35 in 1818 - a tragically young age but one by which he was already known as an “eminent artist” of “peculiar genius”; both were influential in transforming the character of early 19th century design and Bullock’s work was to foreshadow the aesthetic movement of Victorian times. The furniture of Stourhead, Wiltshire is one of the younger Chippendale’s best known and documented commissions. A pair of candelabras by George BullockMore information on George Bullock25 October & AGM (The last lecture in the current membership year)Edward SaundersPetra, the Rose Red CityPetra, built within the Biblical mountains of Edom in southern Jordan, is one of the most extraordinary and memorable sites of the ancient world. It was once the centre of a great civilisation established by a people called the Nabateans, who came into the area from the Arabian peninsular about 500 BC, and their surviving tomb monuments, carved from the solid rock, still astound and overwhelm today. In contrast, Palmyra, to the north in the Syrian desert and east of Damascus, boasts a vast assembly of ruins scattered across the desert floor, which, with their richly-carved ornament and the splendour of the column-lined streets, evoke the grandeur and ostentation of the late Roman Empire. As Petra began to decline in the 2nd century AD, so Palmyra rose to its height, but both cities at first succumbed to a diminution of trade as the Roman Empire itself began to fall apart, and then they were successively demolished by a series of earthquakes from the 6th century onwards. Recommended Reading: Petra and Palmyra by Iain Browning, published by Chatto and Windus.UNSCO web site page on PetraNational Geographic page on PetraNew Membership Year22 NovemberSophie Oosterwijk Peasant Pastimes? The Art of Pieter Bruegel the Elder.Pieter Bruegel (also Brueghel) the Elder was the most significant artist of Dutch and Flemish Renaissance painting, a painter and printmaker from Brabant, known for his landscapes and peasant scenes (so called genre painting); he was a pioneer in making both types of subject the focus in large paintings.He was a formative influence on Dutch Golden Age painting and later painting in general in his innovative choices of subject matter, as one of the first generation of artists to grow up when religious subjects had ceased to be the natural subject matter of painting. Above: The Peasant Wedding Pieter Bruegel the Elder 156724 January 2019Douglas SkeggsKlimt and the Viennese SuccessionGustav Klimt (July 14, 1862 – February 6, 1918) was an Austrian symbolist painter and one of the most prominent members of the Vienna Secession movement. Klimt is noted for his paintings, murals, sketches, and other objects d'art. Klimt's primary subject was the female body, and his works are marked by a frank eroticism. In addition to his figurative works, which include allegories and portraits, he painted landscapes. Among the artists of the Vienna Secession, Klimt was the most influenced by Japanese art and its methods.Click here to see Klimt’s complete works & read more about him
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