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Old 20th Oct 2003, 16:15   #1
pandop
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Default Pre-Raphaelite and Other Masters: The Andrew Lloyd-Webber Co

The Royal Academy of Arts, 20th September - 12th December 2003

Although I had not been able to book a ticket for this in advance (as they recommend www.royalacademy.org.uk) as all the advance tickets had been sold, I did not have any difficulty getting a ticket to go in there and then, and while it was busy, it was not unbearably so.

The catalogue was a very resonable £19.95 in paperback, and you can have £1 off if you have a student card :D It is well worth buying this, as it contains pictures of eveything in the exhibition, many of wich you can't see elsewhere (on prints etc) as this is a private collection. I was pleased to read in AL-W's introduction to the catalogue that he hopes that the collection can go on permanent display somewhere after his death, as this is a truly wonderful collection.

There have been some very snobbish reviews of this exhibition, as Victorian Art is still looked down on by some in the art world (this is explored further in the catalogue) and then there is the Andrew Lloyd-Webber facor (some critics seem to think if they don't like his work, he can't possibly have taste in art). I loved it though

The collection is a lot bigger than I expected, and covers more than just paintings - AL-W also has tapestries, furniture, books (including a Kelmscott Chaucer on vellum - I am so jealous), and ceramics. I would advise leaving plenty of time for this exhibition, as there is plenty to see.

Although the collection is primarily works by the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood, and other Victorian artists, such as LS Lowry and Atkinson Grimshaw, there are also works by Picasso and Stanley Spencer (and others who I have forgotten). However, this does not serve to make the collection seem unduly eccentric, as there are other themes that run through the collection, such as scenes of everyday life.

The collection is well laid out, with the works grouped by period, artist and theme (sometime more than one of the above will apply to a room) and each of the rooms had a distinct 'feel' to them. My one complaint about the rooms was that the decision to make the information panels the same colour as the walls did sometimes make them hard to read in the lighting. Oh - and my favourite paintings were never in a room with somewhere to sit (this exhibition is very short on seats, as the centre of the room often contains a furniture display) - but that is just sod's law :wink:

All in all this is an exhibition I would heartily recommend to anyone, especially if you like Victorian Art, but even if you don't I would still suggest that you go, as it will open your eyes to it a little!

Hazel
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Old 20th Oct 2003, 16:29   #2
Colyngbourne
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Would that I could get to see this (and the Gothic exhibition at the V&A) - we have a William Morris exhibition across the road from me at the mo, which is great, and also an exhibition of Tim Rice's private collection (including some fantastic Waterhouse pics).
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Old 20th Oct 2003, 16:45   #3
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Where are you - I would love to see those too!

Hazel
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