View a dance classic on the big screen and discover the history of our Christmas dinners – these are just two of our picks of cultural happenings for this month
YOUR FAVOURITE NATIONAL GALLERY ARTWORK
30 Oct 2023
WHICH ARTWORK IN THE NATIONAL GALLERY'S COLLECTION HAS A SPECIAL MEANING TO YOU?
The National Gallery in London houses one of the greatest collections of paintings in the world. Those artworks belong to the public and are free for us to view. In 2024 the gallery will be marking its 200th anniversary with a nationwide year-long festival, celebrating art, creativity and imagination.
We aim to mark this moment with coverage in the spring issue of The Arts Society Magazine. Within our feature we’d love to know which of the artworks in the collection has a special meaning to you and why that is so.
Gallery 36 following a rehang © The National Gallery, London
Banner image: Front of the National Gallery © The National Gallery, London
Here are some examples to inspire you:
A WOMAN BY ROBERT CAMPIN
Voted for by Pat Wood, Member of The Arts Society Chiswick and The Arts Society Westminster
"This portrait is in Room 28 of the National Gallery... where people flock to see the Arnolfini Portrait by Jan van Eyck. If you turn to your right, there is this lovely portrait of a young woman, probably just married to the man next to her. It is so beautifully painted you can almost hear her breathing. Amazing skin and eyes, and the folds of her linen headwear are perfect. Her expression is one of submission, but inner strength and optimism. How amazing it must be to be able to paint like this!"
THE bASIN OF SAN MARCO ON ASCENSION DAY BY CANALETTO
Voted for by Chris Dye, Chair of The Arts Society Eastbourne
"When I was about eight years old, my parents had a framed poster of this picture on the wall. I was fascinated by the detail and splendour of it and was desperate to go to Venice from that age. My parents finally took me when I was 15 and although I was a little disappointed that there was not an array of golden barges on the canal, the site was still breathtaking. It shows me how even from such an early age, art can have an impact and determine your aims and aspirations for the future. Although this is now not my favourite type of art, the detail and colours still fascinate me and the memories of that poster on the wall remain vivid."
THE WILTON DIPTYCH
Voted for by Maggie Keeble, Chair of The Arts Society Worcester
"Every time I go to the National Gallery, I take a moment to say hello to my favourite painting, The Wilton Diptych. This jewel of an object is a portable two winged panel painting from the 1390s. It is a contemporary depiction of King Richard II with three figures behind him, facing in the opposite panel, the Virgin Mary holding Christ child and a host of angels clothed in the brightest of blues.
Whilst many of the paintings in the National Gallery are large, imposing and meant for public display in a church, palace or weathly home, this has a more personal feel and as it is kept on a glass case it can be closely inspected. Reading the symbolism, this reveals exquisite details in the clothing, jewellery and plants which together with the recognisable figures tells an interesting tale of Richard's family."
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