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«Julia Korner Fine art Trained­originally­as­an­art­historian,­sculptress­and­graphic­illustrator­at­Cambridge,­Julia Korner, l.S.i.a.D., ...»

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traVelS in italY

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Julia Korner Fine art

Trained­originally­as­an­art­historian,­sculptress­and­graphic­illustrator­at­Cambridge,­Julia Korner, l.S.i.a.D., left­Christie’s­auctioneers

in­1997­after­nearly­20­years­in­the­field­as­a­paintings­specialist,­with­extensive­knowledge­of­Old­Masters,­of­British­and­Victorian­and

of­European­and­American­paintings­of­the­18th,­19th­and­20th­Century.­­In­1987­she­set­up­the­Maritime­Department­at­Christie’s­and built­it­into­the­pre-eminent­department­in­the­auction­world,­with­sales­in­London,­New­York­and­Amsterdam.

At­the­same­time,­she­was­involved­in­conservation,­in­picture­restoration,­in­the­production­of­classic­gilt­and­gesso­frames,­and­in­the conservation­of­frames,­sculpture­and­garden­statuary­in­her­own­studio.­She­set­up­her­own­business­in­1997­to­assist­clients­with­all­aspects of­their­collection­-­conservation,­restoration­and­buying­and­selling­items.­She­also­advises­on­conserving­historic­interiors­and­gilded ceilings­/­rooms­and­works­in situ. She­also­advises­museums­and­private­clients­on­the­conservation­of­their­collections.­She­has­recently expanded­her­studio­to­cover­increased­demand­on­the­conservation­side­of­her­business.

Alongside­her­existing­conservation­work­she­is­able­to­act­as­an­independent­agent­at­auction­and­to­offer­clients­the­individual­attention she­gave­them­during­her­years­at­Christie’s.­­She­also­offers­an­intelligence­service­which­covers­the­events­of­the­London­gallery­and auction­seasons­as­well­as­valuation,­conservation/framing­and­research­services.­ In­1997­she­was­elected­Huntington­Fellow­of­the­Mariners’­Museum,­Newport­News,­Virginia,­USA;­­a­seven­year­commitment,­which involved­producing­the­catalogue­of­this­collection­for­visiting­academics­(and­that­of­its­sister­organisation,­the­South­Street­Seaport Museum,­New­York).­­She­valued­the­collection,­advised­on­the­condition­of­the­paintings­and­on­sales­and­acquisitions.­The­second­stage was­to­assemble­an­international­maritime­exhibition­on­the­18th,­19th­and­20th­century­great­Maritime­painters­of­the­Dutch,­American and­British­Schools.­­It­was­envisaged­that­this­would­travel­from­New­York­to­Newport­News,­Virginia,­to­London­and­Amsterdam.­Very sadly,­funding­fell­through­at­the­eleventh­hour­so­the­exhibition­itself­never­took­place.

In­January,­2001­Julia­was­approached­to­curate­a­major­exhibition­entitled­‘Yachting and the america’s Cup’. Phillips,­the­auctioneers, then­owned­by­L.V.M.H.,­had­decided­to­mount­this­event­to­mark­the­150th­anniversary­of­the­America’s­Cup.­A­full­complement­of­pictures and­ephemera­from­museums,­yacht­clubs­and­private­collectors­from­all­over­the­world­had­been­amassed­when­owing­to­unforeseen circumstances,­the­exhibition­was­cancelled­in­May­2001.

She­lectures­predominantly­for­NADFAS,­Christie’s­Education,­The­Sotheby’s­Institute,­The­National­Maritime­Museum­and­to­Art­Societies and­she­is­a­valuer­for­antiques’­road­shows­both­at­home­and­abroad.­­ Julia­Korner­is­an­elected­member­of­The­British­Antique­Dealers’­Association­and­LAPADA­-­the­Association­of­Professional­Art­and Antiques­Dealers­(where­she­exhibits­her­pictures­each­year);­The­British­Association­of­Paintings­Conservator­Restorers,­The­Guild­of Arts­Scholars,­Dealers­and­Collectors,­The­Institute­of­Conservation,­The­International­Institute­for­Conservation,­The­Fine­Art­Trade­Guild, The­Maritime­Information­Association,­The­Museums­Association,­and­The­Conservation­Consortium

–  –  –

Julia Korner The River House, 52 Strand on the Green, London W4 3PD, United Kingdom (By appointment only) Tel: +44 (0)20 8747 1652 Mob: 07771 713980 Fax: +44 (0)20 8742 7419 E-mail: julia@juliakorner.com www.juliakorner.com A RT I S T S ’ I N D E X

1. Giovanni Bandini (1540-1599)

2. Follower of Federigo Zuccaro or Zucchero

3. Polidoro (da Caravaggio) Caldara (c. 1492-1543)

4. Ludovico Cardi, also known as Cigoli (1559-1613)

5. After Andrea del Sarto, thought to be a near contemporary version.

6. Jan Asselijn (circa 1616-1652)

7. Hugh Douglas Hamilton (1740-1808) 8a.-9. John ‘Warwick’ Smith (1749-1831)

10. John Thomas Serres (1759-1825)

11. James Duffield Harding, O.W.S. (1797-1863) 12-14. William Callow, R.W.S. (1812-1908)

15. John Frederick Lewis, P.O.W.S., R.A. (1805-1876) 16-18. William Leighton Leitch, R.I. (1804-1883)

19. John Ruskin, H.R.W.S. (1819-1900)

20. Carl Friedrich Heinrich Werner (1808-1894)

21. Clarkson Stanfield, R.A. (1793-1869)

22. John Skinner Prout (1806-1876)

23. The Reverend Francis Russell Nixon (1803-1879)

24. Edward Alfred Angelo Goodall, R.W.S (1819-1908)

25. Hercules Brabazon Brabazon (1821-1906)

26. Albert Goodwin, R.W.S. (1845-1932)

27. John MacWhirter, R.A., A.R.S.A., R.S.W. (1839-1911)





28. Vincenzo Cabianca, (1827-1902)

29. Circle of Albert Bierstadt (1830-1902)

30. Donald Stuart Leslie Friend (1915-1989)

31. John Piper, CH (1903-1992)

32. Edgar Millington-Drake (1932-1994) 33-35. Victoria Crowe OBE, RSA, RSW (born 1945) 2

TRAVELS IN ITALY

The spark for this catalogue was the reading, during the celebrations of the bicentenary of his birth, of Pictures from Italy by Charles Dickens, published in 1846.

We all know Dickens as a man of varied interests, tastes and talents, with an immeasurable ability to paint pictures in words, but serious writing on art, fact or fiction, is rarely to be found in his works. Dickens is probably remembered best for the highly adverse criticism he delivered on encountering for the first time Millais’s Christ in the House of his Parents (1849/50), which Dickens deplored for its (excessive) realism and where he compared the depiction of Mary, the mother of Jesus, as a “Monster, in the vilest cabaret in France, or the lowest gin-shop in England”, a reaction interpreted benignly after his death by his daughter, Kate, herself an artist and married successively to two painters, to have been excited by her father’s own, earlier, vision of such a scene out-of-keeping with Millais’s portrayal. Fortunately, this expression of displeasure did not prevent Millais and Dickens becoming closely acquainted, if not firm friends.

Dickens’s major artistic interests, in the first instance, lay not unnaturally in securing the best illustration for his literary works. He was a staunch, if critical, supporter of his chosen illustrators, selected not only for their artistic competence and attention to detail, but also for their empathy in the depiction of character and context. Dickens believed the work of George Cruikshank, Hablot Knight Browne (‘Phiz’) and John Leech to be on par with Royal Academicians and thought illustrators to be excluded wrongfully from exhibitions at the National Gallery, then the home of the Royal Academy.

Dickens numbered many artists amongst his friends, most notably Clarkson Stanfield (who painted the scenery for two of Dickens’s domestic theatrical productions, one piece of which, The Eddystone Lighthouse, is to be seen at the Dickens House in Doughty Street), Daniel Maclise, William Powell Frith and Augustus Egg. Dickens collected both paintings and watercolours by his contemporaries, and this substantial collection was dispersed in a Christie’s sale shortly after his death in 1870.

When Dickens went to Italy in 1844, he was following a well-trodden path, not only of his Victorian contemporaries but also of centuries of English travellers, from mediaeval times onwards. Aesthetic tourism in Italy has a distinguished history, with collections of pictures, drawings and architectural sketches formed by Thomas, Earl of Arundel and Charles I in the early years of the Seventeenth Century, via the employment, respectively, of Inigo Jones and Nicholas Lanier. Not to be forgotten, also, is Sir Henry Wotton, James I’s ambassador to Venice and, later, Provost of Eton, who pioneered the ambassadorial collections of which Joseph ‘Consul’ Smith, the resident in Venice between 1744 and 1760, was probably the most notable and part of whose collection, after his death, was purchased by George III.

The Eighteenth Century is, of course, the age of the Grand Tour, the visit of the English upper classes, accompanied by tutors and artists 3 and often in the company also of literary men such as the ‘immortal’ Gibbon, Smollett and Sterne, to the sources of their classical studies.

To this period belongs within the catalogue the portrait of Thomas Maynard Heselrige, later Sir Thomas Heselrige (No. 7) by Hugh Douglas Hamilton, a gifted Irishman, resident in Rome from 1779 to 1791, and the accomplished watercolours of John ‘Warwick’ Smith (see illustration numbers 8 to 9), whose stay in Italy between 1776 and 1781 was financed by his patron, George Greville, 2nd Earl of Warwick.

Artists approached Italy, until the Risorgimento (1848-1870), a plethora of city states, duchies and principalities, dominated by the Papal States and the Kingdom of the Two Sicilies, with a variety of aspirations and intentions: to capture, in the first instance, the elements of classical beauty appropriate to the history painting prized by the Royal Academy. Topographical accuracy was not considered as essential as classical construction, in homage to the admired works of Poussin and Claude, and allowance was made both for the caprice and the picturesque. For the Grand Tourist, Rome was the ultimate destination, with only Venice and Florence worthy of detour. Once Pompeii was uncovered, Naples joined the limited number of hallowed places deemed essential to the traveller’s enlightenment. The popularity of local artists, such as Canaletto, Guardi and Batoni to these aristocratic travellers is well known. Drawings by those we term today ‘Old Masters’ were also prized and the Dukes of Devonshire and of Buccleuch as well as Sir Joshua Reynolds and Sir Thomas Lawrence formed notable collections. This catalogue contains examples of the types of drawings collected, with works from the Florentine School in particular illustration No. 4.

It is often forgotten that the Continent was accessible only intermittently to the British visitor during the Eighteenth Century. The period might well be termed that of the ‘Second Hundred Years’ War’ between Great Britain and France, with the Continent closed by armed conflict between 1702 and 1714, from 1740 and 1748, between 1756 and 1763, from 1778 to 1783 and, finally, for the extended period from the outbreak of the Revolutionary wars in 1793 to the end of the Napoleonic wars in 1815, with only a brief interlude in 1802/03 following the Piece of Amiens. Indeed, the Continent became familiar as much through albums of engravings, first, of classical treasures and sites as through actual visits. Such an approach and method was enhanced greatly during the Regency and early Victorian periods when albums of antiquarian and picturesque scenes were commissioned from artists we now consider masters in the field of drawing and watercolour.

Thomas Girtin, JMW Turner, Samuel Prout, John Sell Cotman, James Duffield Harding, William Callow and Clarkson Stanfield found employment as recorders of foreign sights/sites for those unable/unused to travel. Armchair tourism has a distinguished lineage.

The Nineteenth Century began with British tourist, as a result of the Napoleonic wars, confined to barracks. A rush of travellers to Brussels and Paris, often escaping creditors in the manner of Rawdon and Becky Crawley in Vanity Fair, soon spread further afield. The works of Walter Scott in particular had coupled the natural desire to visit new places and to mix with other, sometimes ’inferior’, societies with a wish to rediscover the past, particularly as so many sights had been damaged/destroyed by the previous spread of 4 revolutionary fervour. These new travellers were driven less by reverence for the classical past than by the growth of, first, the Romantic spirit and thereafter by the spread of the aesthetic movement, exemplified by John Ruskin. It was movement aided and abetted by the improvement in physical transport, whether by road, sea or railway, which permitted the voyager to travel in increasing safety and in (relative) comfort.

Tellingly, Dickens called the account of his travels Pictures from Italy as if he recognised that his facility with words allowed him to create vivid tableaux of places visited and characters observed rather than to focus on the works of art to be found in Italian churches, palaces and galleries, ably described in the guidebooks published by Messrs. Murray and Baedeker, the essential hand-luggage of the Victorian tourist. Dickens displayed too the irritations and prejudices of his contemporaries with regard to Italy and, in a letter to the Count D’Orsay in August 1845, he remarked with some feeling: “What a sad place Italy is! A country gone to sleep and without prospect of waking again!..It seemed as if one had reached the end of all things – as if there were no more progress, motion, advancement of any kind beyond; but here the whole scheme had stopped centuries ago, never to move on any more, but just lying down in the sun to bask there, ‘till the Day of Judgement”.



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