Former Labour MP Tristram Hunt To Direct the V&A

Posted in museums by Editor on January 14, 2017

Press release (13 January 2017) from the V&A:

tristram-hunt1_8c76efcbd103e88a1b8aeff06d5af1da-610x968The V&A Trustees have today appointed Dr Tristram Hunt as the new Director of the V&A. Hunt has served as Labour MP for Stoke-on-Trent Central since 2010 and was previously the Shadow Secretary of State and Shadow Minister for Education. A historian, politician, writer, and broadcaster, Hunt is an expert on the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries, with a particular focus on Victorian urban history. He is the author of several books, including The English Civil War: At First Hand and most recently Ten Cities That Made An Empire. A regular history broadcaster on BBC and Channel 4, Hunt has made more than a dozen series on subjects including Elgar and Empire, Isaac Newton, and the English Civil War. Hunt lectures on modern British history at Queen Mary University of London. He is a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society, a founder of the Stoke-on-Trent Literary Festival and a Patron of the British Ceramics Biennial, and was previously a Trustee of both the Heritage Lottery Fund and the National Heritage Memorial Fund, and a Curator of the Mayor of London’s History Festival.

Hunt’s support of the ceramics industry, together with the Art Fund, played an important role in saving the Wedgwood Collection in 2014. The collection was gifted to the V&A and is on long-term loan to the Wedgwood Museum in Barlaston, Stoke-on-Trent. He brings widespread expertise across education, industry, and politics to the V&A and a keen awareness of the important role of major public institutions in the UK, having been at the forefront of political, cultural and public life for the last decade. Hunt’s appointment has been confirmed by the Prime Minister and the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, and he will join the Museum in the coming months.

Announcing the appointment, V&A Chairman Nicholas Coleridge said: “On behalf of the Trustees, I am delighted to announce the appointment of Dr Tristram Hunt as Director of the Victoria and Albert Museum. He has a highly compelling mixture of experience across public life, the arts, history, education and academia, and knows our collections well from his writing and broadcasting. In addition, he is an informed and articulate leader and communicator on numerous facets of culture, both historic and contemporary, and I greatly look forward to working with him at the V&A.”

Dr Tristram Hunt said: “I am delighted and honoured to have been appointed Director of the V&A. I have loved the V&A since I was a boy, and today it is a global leader in its unrivalled collections, special exhibitions, academic research, and visitor experience. It is a moment of transformation and renewal for the V&A, with the upcoming opening of the new Exhibition Road entrance and new sites and galleries in Dundee, China, and Stratford. I am particularly pleased that, through the V&A ownership of the Wedgwood Collection, my passion for education in Stoke-on-Trent can continue. The combination of the power of the collections and expertise of an inspirational team is what makes the V&A the world’s greatest museum of art, design, and performance. I am honoured to take on this exciting opportunity.”

Hunt has a First Class degree in history from the University of Cambridge (1995), before serving as an Exchange Fellow at The University of Chicago (1996). Hunt also has a PhD from the University of Cambridge on “Civil Thought in Britain, 1820–1860.” He has lectured on British and international culture at the Centre for European Studies, University of California, Berkeley; the Centre for European Studies at Harvard; Princeton University; and the National University of Singapore.

After working on the 1997 General Election campaign, he became a Special Adviser to Science Minister Lord Sainsbury (1997–2000), Associate Fellow at the Centre for History and Economics, King’s College, Cambridge and Senior Fellow at the Institute for Public Policy Research.

Between 2001 and 2010, Hunt combined his post as Senior Lecturer in British History at Queen Mary, University of London with work as a history broadcaster, presenting over fifteen radio and television programmes for the BBC and Channel 4 on subjects including Elgar and Empire, Isaac Newton, and the English Civil War. In addition to making regular contributions to The Guardian and The Observer, he is also the author of The English Civil War: At First Hand (2002), Building Jerusalem: The Rise and Fall of the Victorian City (2004), and the award-winning biography, The Frock-coated Communist: The Revolutionary Life of Friedrich Engels (2009), and Ten Cities That Made an Empire (2014). During this period, Hunt also served as a Trustee of the National Heritage Memorial Fund, the Heritage Lottery Fund, and the Centre for Cities think-tank.

Since entering Parliament, Hunt has focused on educational excellence, the regeneration needs of Stoke-on-Trent, the ceramics industry, and energy intensive sector. He is a Trustee of the History of Parliament Trust and fellow of the Royal Historical Society. From October 2013 until September 2015, Hunt served as Labour’s Shadow Education Secretary focusing on developing Labour’s policy on teachers’ professional development, vocational education and early years education.

Exhibition | Alexandre Lenoir’s Museum of French Monuments

Posted in books, catalogues, exhibitions by Editor on January 14, 2017

I’m nearly a year late with this posting, but the catalogue is still available. CH

From the Louvre:

Un Musée révolutionnaire: Le musée des Monuments français d’Alexandre Lenoir
A Revolutionary Museum: Alexandre Lenoir’s Museum of French Monuments
Musée du Louvre, Paris, 7 April — 4 July 2016

Curated by Geneviève Bresc-Bautier and Béatrice de Chancel-Bardelot

9782754109376-001-tDating from 1795, the Museum of French Monuments was France’s second national museum, coming in the wake of the Louvre, founded in 1793. It played a major part in the birth of the notion of heritage and the emergence of medieval history. However, it was closed in 1816 and its contents are currently to be found in institutions in France—the Louvre’s Department of Sculptures, the Ecole des Beaux-Arts in Paris, the basilica of Saint-Denis, the Musée de Cluny, Notre Dame, various churches in the Paris diocese—and abroad: mainly in the Metropolitan Museum in New York, but also in the Victoria and Albert Museum in London. The exhibition recounts the pioneering achievement of Alexandre Lenoir as museum curator, exhibition designer, and fervent heritage protector. It also explores the establishment and history of the Museum of French Monuments, whose exhibition style had a powerful influence on the sensibility and the arts of the period.

Organized by Geneviève Bresc-Bautier (Musée du Louvre), and Béatrice de Chancel-Bardelot (Musée de Cluny-Musée National du Moyen Âge).

From Hazan:

Geneviève Bresc-Bautier and Béatrice de Chancel-Bardelot, eds. Un Musée révolutionnaire: Le musée des Monuments français d’Alexandre Lenoir (Paris: Hazan, 2016), 380 pages, ISBN: 978 27541  09376, €45.

Alexandre Lenoir (1761–1839), fervent défenseur des arts face au vandalisme révolutionnaire, fut le créateur et l’administrateur du musée des Monuments français de 1791 à sa fermeture en 1816 et à la dispersion de ses collections.L’exposition qui se tiendra dans le hall Napoléon du musée du Louvre du 7 avril au 4 juillet 2016 s’attache dans un premier temps à présenter l’histoire et l’influence de cette institution et de son fondateur sur l’historiographie et la conservation du patrimoine français. Dans un second temps, l’exposition dévoile au public plusieurs ensembles de sculptures tels qu’ils étaient exposés au musée des Monuments français, notamment les statues-colonnes de Gaillon représentant Jeanne d’Arc et Louis XII ou encore le tombeau de Valentine Balbiani et du cardinal René de Birague. Plus qu’un catalogue d’exposition, la publication accompagnant cet événement constitue un véritable ouvrage de référence sur le musée des Monuments français. Dirigé par les commissaires d’exposition Geneviève Bresc-Bautier et Béatrice de Chancel, il rassemble vingt-huit textes d’historiens de l’art accompagnés de plus de deux cent cinquante illustrations, notamment les nombreuses vues de salles à l’aquarelle de Jean-Lubin Vauzelle qui font revivre un instant ce musée aujourd’hui disparu.



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