The Great Gallery houses some of the grandest and most important works of in the Wallace collection, the vast majority of which were created in the seventeenth century, the period associated with 'the Baroque'. But what exactly does that mean? Does it fit all of the artistic output of the century? Over the four mornings of the course we will take the opportunity to examine the Baroque and the Great Gallery together. Each day will explore a specific theme in the lecture theatre, and, after coffee, visit the Collection to see at first hand how these ideas can help us to understand the exhibits. We will focus on one or two of the works in the Great Gallery, heading elsewhere within the museum as the discussion leads us.
Friday 23 February 4. North Spain or Not Spain? The Flemish Baroque and Dutch Independence We will explore the political history of the Netherlands, and the Eighty Years War which led to the establishment of the Dutch Republic, and left Flanders as part of the Spanish Realm. The effect this had on the artistic production of the two countries cannot be underestimated. We will look at Rubens, Van Dyck, Rembrandt and Hals first hand, and consider to what extent the Dutch genre painters such as de Hooch and still life painters like Jan Weenix can be considered 'baroque'.