In this talk, we will delve into the world of the Tudors. From Henry VIII's writing desk to Wolsey's angels to Holbein's masterpiece The Ambassadors we will be discussing painting, sculpture, and personal objects associated with Henry and his court. This seminar will focus on Tudor art from the National Gallery, the Victoria Albert, and the National Portrait Gallery.
We will begin in the National Gallery with one of the most ambitious paintings by Holbein, the double portrait of the French Ambassadors, painted in 1533, the year of the birth of Elizabeth I. A tour de force in portraiture the painting also includes astonishingly observed scientific objects and textiles. It also includes a mysterious image of immortality, hidden in the paint. The National Gallery collection also includes a portrait of Erasmus of Rotterdam, a prospective bride for Henry VIII, and the portrait of an enigmatic unknown English woman.
The Victoria and Albert Museum houses numerous sculptures associated with the Tudor court. Most show the influence of renaissance Italy with a terracotta bust of Henry VII by Michelangelo's great rival Torrigiano and four beautiful angels by Benedetto da Rovezzano commissioned by Wolsey for an elaborate tomb. Also at the V&A is an intricate silver-gilt reliquary designed by Hans Holbein's father showing the martyred St Sebastian.
The V & A also houses objects associated with Tudors including a writing desk decorated with motifs associated with the King and his first wife, Catherine of Aragon, a whistle reputed to have been owned by Anne Boleyn, and jewelry associated with Mary Queen of Scots and Queen Elizabeth 1. Finally, we will look at the miniature as an art form with examples by the first woman artist recorded as working in the English court, Levinia Terlinc, who served four Tudor monarchs and who was paid more than Hans Holbein.
Led by Art Historian Hattie Bennett, this interactive seminar will unpick the narrative of a particular episode in Tudor history with the aid of key portraits. Designed to inform curiosity as well as future travels, participants will come away with a true understanding of the iconography of court painting and the Tudors.
This conversation is suitable for all ages.
90 minutes, including a 30 minute Q&A.
Very interesting. I liked the descriptions and histories behind the art and the artists. Thanks for a great way to spend an afternoon.
Hattie guided us through a journey of art and symbolism that went far beyond the works of Hans Holbien, who many Tudor followers have known and loved through the years. Hattie's introduction to other artists of the era, even those unknown, and mythbusting of popular image icons was a refreshing and intuitive awakening into more realms of Tudor art. I learned far more than I expected and look forward to many more of Hattie's classes. The pace was great, conversation friendly, and knowledge priceless. A great course for Tudor beginners and a great gap-filler for Tudor history buffs.
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I love history and it was just a delight to hear a live lecture with pictures and be able to ask questions