The 4th Marquess of Hertford and Sir Richard Wallace were both passionate collectors of miniatures, exquisite small paintings in watercolour or enamel, generally made for private contemplation and one of the most popular mediums of portraiture in an age before the advent of photography.
This book, written by two of the Collection’s curators, Stephen Duffy and Christoph Vogtherr, presents one of the major British collections of miniatures, a group of over 330 works which formed part of the generous bequest to the British nation made by Lady Wallace in 1897. The collection includes by far the best group of French miniatures in Britain, as well as fine examples of English miniature painting and works from other schools. The publication celebrates the recent opening of a new gallery at Hertford House devoted to miniatures and gold boxes, the Boudoir Cabinet. It features seventy of the finest miniatures in the Wallace Collection, all of them reproduced in colour, most for the first time.
The volume spans the period from the mid-sixteenth to the late nineteenth centuries. The entries include much new information on the miniatures and are accompanied by images of related works in the Wallace Collection and elsewhere. There are introductory essays on the history of the collection and on French eighteenth-century miniatures, a particular highlight of the collection. Exceptional among English language publications in its focus on French miniatures, this book offers a fascinating and tantalising glimpse into the magical world of the miniature.
Price £25 – available to buy in our shop or online at www.wallacecollection.org/shop