Exhibition | Versailles: Treasures from the Palace

Posted in books, catalogues, exhibitions by Editor on July 20, 2016


Hall of Mirrors (Galerie des Glaces), 1678–84
(Château de Versailles)

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Press release (18 July 2016) from the NGA:

Versailles: Treasures from the Palace
National Gallery of Australia, Canberra, 9 December 2016 — 17 April 2017

The NGA has revealed details of the sumptuous treasures from the Palace of Versailles, which will be on show in Canberra this December. Versailles: Treasures from the Palace is a once-in-a-lifetime chance to see and experience a mesmerising period in French history in Australia. For the first time ever, the treasures will travel from France to entice visitors into a world of power, passion and luxury through this epic exhibition. More than 130 paintings, intricate tapestries, gilded furniture, monumental statues and other objects from the Royal gardens, and personal items from Louis XIV to Marie-Antoinette, will bring to life the reigns of three kings, their queens and mistresses in a fascinating and tumultuous period of French history. The exhibition will celebrate the lives, loves, and passions of the people of Versailles through a full program of activities including music performances, children’s programs, and public events.

François Hubert Drouais, The Sourches family 1756, oil on canvas (Château de Versailles, Dist. RMN-Grand Palais / Christophe Fouin)

François Hubert Drouais, The Sourches Family (‘Le Concert Champêtre’), 1756, oil on canvas (Château de Versailles, Dist. RMN-Grand Palais / Christophe Fouin)

“We are delighted to bring the grandeur of the culture of Versailles exclusively to Canberra and make it possible for all Australians to access and appreciate the social, political and cultural aspects of this unique phenomenon. If ever absolute power can be expressed through unbridled opulence, this is it,” said Gerard Vaughan, NGA Director.

“Along with astonishing treasures, like the marble bust of Louis XIV, or the glamorous formal portrait of Marie- Antoinette, we are bringing to Australia the entire 1.5 tonne statue of Latona and Her Children from one of the main fountains of the Palace of Versailles,” said Dr Vaughan. “The authenticity of this cultural experience will leave a lasting imprint on all our visitors.”

The exhibition contrasts small personal items, such as the precious golden reliquary which belonged to Louis XIV’s mother, or Marie-Antoinette’s hand-crafted chair and harp, with huge works including six-metre tapestries from the most important Gobelins series ever produced for Louis XIV, and a monumental conversation piece of the Sourches family which requires individual freight.

“Versailles is at the heart of French cultural expression as much as the NGA is the heart of Australian visual expression and we are very excited to bring this historic exhibition to Australia,” said Catherine Pégard, President of the Public Establishment of the Palace, Museum and National Estate of Versailles.

“The opportunity to send such important French treasures has been made possible because of the major restoration program at Versailles, and we are thrilled to see that the outcome of the work will be the enjoyment of thousands of Australians,” said Christophe Lecourtier, Ambassador of France to Australia.

“The NGA is bringing to Canberra yet another spectacular show, which will attract people from all over the country and the world this summer,” said Andrew Barr, ACT Chief Minister. “These shows are important to the local tourism sector and I’m confident that this show will be another success for the Gallery.”





Exhibition | The Artistry of Outlander: Costumes and Set Designs

Posted in exhibitions, today in light of the 18th century by Editor on July 20, 2016

From The Paley Center:

The Artistry of Outlander: Costumes and Set Designs
The Paley Center for Media, Los Angeles, 8 June — 14 August 2016

IMG_20160607_064307The Artistry of Outlander takes visitors into the world of the critically acclaimed STARZ and Sony Pictures Television series Outlander, showcasing many iconic costumes designed by Emmy-winning costume designer Terry Dresbach. Fans can step into 18th-century Parisian society, where they will be able to view actual set pieces from Outlander production designer Jon Gary Steele, life-size episodic photography, and behind-the-scenes video segments.

An extended description, with photographs, is provided by Amy Ratcliffe, writing for Nerdist (8 June 2016).

During a panel after the exhibit preview, Dresbach and Steele revealed they’ve been wanting to tackle 18th-century Paris for practically their entire careers. In fact, they longed to specifically work on Outlander. “Gary and I have been planning to do this show for about 25 years,” Dresbach said. She joked that she had to marry somebody (Outlander executive producer Ronald D. Moore) to make it happen, “It was all to get to Outlander.” Dresbach introduced Steele to Gabaldon’s book in the early ’90s, and they’ve been dreaming about it since. . . .

The sets in 18th-century France were so opulent and vivid, you’d think they were shot on location. That wasn’t the case. Most sets were built in a stage—including Claire and Jamie’s apartment, Master Raymond’s apothecary, and King Louis’ star chamber. They shot some exteriors in Prague, but for the most part, Steele got to dream the world into creation. “As designers, we want to build. It’s all from the ground-up. You create the whole thing. You control the color, the floor, the walls, the ceiling. That is so much more fun. It’s on stage, so it’s better in many ways for all of production,” Steele said. . .

Ratcliffe’s full piece is available here»



New Book | Hogarth’s Legacy

Posted in books by InternRW on July 20, 2016

Distributed by Yale UP:

Cynthia Roman, ed., Hogarth’s Legacy (New Haven: Yale University Press, 2016), 272 pages, ISBN: 978-0300215618, $80.

Hogarth's LegacyThe legacy of graphic artist William Hogarth (1697–1764) remains so emphatic that even his last name has evolved into a common vernacular term referring to his characteristically scathing form of satire. Featuring rarely seen images and written contributions from leading scholars, this book showcases a collection of the artist’s works gathered from the Lewis Walpole Library at Yale University and other repositories. It attests to the idiosyncratic nature of his style and its international influence, which continues to incite aesthetic and moral debate among critics. The eight essays by eminent Hogarth experts help to further contextualize the artist’s unique narrative strategies, embedding the work within German philosophical debates and the moral confusion of the Victorian period and emphasizing the social and political dimensions that are part and parcel of its profound impact. Endlessly parodied and emulated, Hogarth’s distinctive satire persists in its influence throughout the centuries and this publication provides the necessary lens through which to view it.

Cynthia Roman is curator of prints, drawings, and paintings at the Lewis Walpole Library.