The Holland Park Circle: Artists and Victorian Society
The reign of Queen Victoria witnessed a spectacular rise in the visibility, wealth and prestige of English artists and designers. Leading this resurgence was a group of artists who established their studios in and around the new, fashionable district of London's Holland Park. This book — the... show more
The reign of Queen Victoria witnessed a spectacular rise in the visibility, wealth and prestige of English artists and designers. Leading this resurgence was a group of artists who established their studios in and around the new, fashionable district of London's Holland Park. This book — the first major study of the Holland Park Circle of artists, architects, and their patrons — is both an engrossing narrative of their lives, works and influence and a perceptive analysis of the subtle relationships between high Victorian taste and mercantile values.
The circle was formed around G.F. Watts, who lived at Little Holland House; the handsome and accomplished Frederick Leighton whose home Leighton House is today open to the public; and their friend Valentine Prinsep. The artists who followed included Luke Fildes, Hamo Thorneycroft, William Burges, Marcus Stone and Holman Hunt. Their distinctive red brick studio-houses, designed by prominent architects of the era with exotic interiors characterized by deliciously painted friezes, gesso-work, and sumptuous collections of paintings came to influence the external and internal appearance of London's buildings.
At a time when art in England, in the words of Henry James, had become 'a great fashion', Caroline Dakers also describes how the artists posed 'at home' for society photographs and how their 'Show Sundays' — when the public was invited into the studios — became part of the London Season. Illustrated throughout, this book is a fascinating account of the private and public lives of a set of artists — many of whom became millionaires in their own lifetimes — who exercised an extraordinary sway over the tastes and lifestyles of the rich.
Publish date: 1999-12-11
Publisher: Yale University Press
Pages no: 312
Edition language: English
In the second half of the 19th century, an informal group of artists coalesced in the northwestern London neighborhood of Kensington. Known as the Holland Park Circle, they often had different styles and subject matter but were united by geography and benefited collectively from a growing status of ...