Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Backstairs keep their secrets as home of a giant of Victorian art reopens

Tuesday 22 December 2009
£1.6m restoration of London home of painter Lord Frederic Leighton exposes many features for first time but throws no light on his enigmatic love life


Hels said...

That a person of money and education would want a private palace of art does not surprise me in the least. But I wonder if the neighbours tolerated Leighton's particular palace of art.

The Arab Hall with gorgeous Islamic tiles from Damascus, the gilded ceilings, William De Morgan's ceramics, the dome and apse etc. At least the neighbours must have been relieved that the exterior looked traditionalish.

Hermes said...

"Leighton needed a space where he could demonstrate his position as both president of the Royal Academy and chief exponent of a new aestheticism in painting and design. Leighton House would be his personal advertisement – his calling card to a society which, until recently, had still tended to send all but a handful of artists round to the tradesmen's entrance."


I doubt if it worked with the neighbours no more than it does today. As far as I can see most of his friends were fellow artists who would hardly have said anything as he was so powerful in the art world.
Back soon.