On this day: the death of a war hero | In Times Gone By…

Only hours after being awarded the French Légion d’honneur, British Lieutenant Reginald Warneford was killed in an aeroplane crash on the 17th of June, 1915. A 1919 painting depicting the moment th…

Source: On this day: the death of a war hero | In Times Gone By…

Two Women, Two Tributes | seductivevenice

On this day in 1703, Luisa Bergalli was born. Noteworthy, considering she was not born into the noble class, Luisa entered the world of letters and was warmly welcomed into the literary academies, befriending such luminaries as…

Source: Two Women, Two Tributes | seductivevenice

On this day: the January Uprising began | In Times Gone By…

A symbolic painting of the aftermath of the uprising.

On the 22nd of January, 1863, people of present-day Poland, Ukraine, Lithuania, Belarus and Latvia rose up against rule by the Russian Empire.The uprising would last into the following year, and would result in Russia harshly punishing those captured.

Source: On this day: the January Uprising began | In Times Gone By…

18th-century art in the news: How a long-lost Polish painting, likely stolen by Nazis, ended up in Ohio

reveries of a dixhuitièmiste

Portrait of a Young Man by Polish painter Krzysztof Lubieniecki, 1728 (Photo: FBI)

From Washington Post’s Elahe Izadi:


Polish baroque painter Krzysztof Lubieniecki finished “Portrait of a Young Man” sometime around 1728, and the work of art eventually made its way to Poland’s National Museum in Warsaw.

Then, like thousands of other European artworks, the painting fell into Nazi hands during World War II. For many years the Lubieniecki painting existed only on lists documenting looted art, accompanied by a black-and-white photo to prove its existence.

Now, decades after its theft, “Portrait of a Young Man” is back with Polish officials, the FBI announced Monday.

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The Painted Horn: visiting a rock art site in Somalia

British Museum blog

Jorge de Torres, Project Cataloguer, African Rock Art Image Project, British Museum

Painted image of long-horned cow with human figure underneath, Laas Geel, Somalia (Photograph © TARA/David Coulson – image not yet catalogued) Painted image of long-horned cow with human figure underneath, Laas Geel, Somalia. (Photograph © TARA/David Coulson – image not yet catalogued)

As I look up at the rock shelter here in Somalia, several thoughts cross my mind about the beautiful pieces of rock art above me. There’s always a strange feeling when you visit for the first time a place you have been studying for a long while: a merging of expectations, recognition and, in some cases, a feeling of its being other than how one had imagined it. The first time I saw the Pyramids in Egypt, for all their greatness and despite the myriad of photos, they appeared somehow different to how I had pictured them. However, this has never been the case for me when faced with the paintings and engravings on natural rock surfaces…

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On this day: The Battle of Quatre Bras in 1815

In Times Gone By...

Fought  two days before the Battle of Waterloo, this was one of the most significant and famous battles of the Napoleonic Wars. Between four and five thousand were lost on each side. *

Black Watch at the Battle of Quatre-Bras, 1815, by William Barnes Wollen (1857 – 1936).

Wollen,_Battle_of_Quatre_BrasBlack Watch at the Battle of Quatre-Bras, 1815, by William Barnes Wollen (1857 - 1936).

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On this day: The Duchess of Richmond’s Ball in 1815

In Times Gone By...

The Duchess of Richmond’s famous ball was held in Brussels on the 15th of June, 1815. The following day thousands would be slaughtered in the Battle of Quatre Bras, and then on the eighteenth Napoleon would finally be defeated at Waterloo.

The ball was essentially one last celebration before the final (successful but bloody) attempts to end Napoleon’s power. *

The Duchess of Richmonds famous ball was held in Brussels on the 15th of June 1815. The following day thousands would be slaughtered in the Battle of Quatre Bras.

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Elizabeth Siddal: The Pre-Raphaelite Supermodel

Please ignore the link below and visit via the up-to-date link HERE as ArtLark has reposted the article.


51rEU6PieYL._SL1000_On the 11th of February 1862, Elizabeth Siddal, an English artists’ model, died in London of a self-administered overdose of laudanum. In the early 1850s, as a young woman, Siddal was painted extensively by the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood. She sat for Walter Deverell’s Viola in Twelfth Night (1850), for William Holman Hunt’s British Girl inA Converted British Family Rescuing a Christian Priest from Persecution by the Druids (1851), for John Everett Millais’sOphelia(1852) – for which she posed floating in a bathtub full of water, and for Dante Gabriel Rossetti’s Beatrice, the Virgin Mary, St Catherine, and many others. Rossetti became eventually her husband, and even though Siddal did pursue her own artistic career under the financial patronage of John Ruskin, it was Rossetti who became the eventual medium to Siddal’s posthumous legendary status. In fact, “[in] her lifetime, she had virtually no public identity, and in the…

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Halloween story: the stranger

The Library Time Machine

This week’s guest blogger is Marianne Collins, former Librarian at the J____ Street Library, now Head Archivist at the European Institute of Esoteric Studies, She presents an episode of library history with a few local connections.

The Victorian psycho-geographer Henrietta Cole-Elliott is best known for her two London tours “West London walks”(1895), and “Burial grounds of the secret city” (1900) but before she wrote either of those she published a study of folklore, “Follies and fancies of old London” (1885). There was a copy in the Reference store but I had never looked inside. The folklore collection wasn’t usually of much use to my customers. It was my assistant K who brought it up for a visitor. The next day she drew my attention to a page the customer had photocopied. This was the relevant paragraph:

“At the Lion Tavern, Old Brompton, in the days before May Day, a dress and bonnet…

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The Red Portfolio: more tales of old Brompton

The Library Time Machine

It’s an archivist’s joke. The watercolour paintings by an unknown artist which were formerly kept in a red portfolio are now stored in a green archive box labelled…the Red Portfolio. The pictures, probably loose sheets by the time they fell into the archivist’s hands were carefully removed from the portfolio and mounted or (later) put into acetate sleeves. On the reverse of the sheets the artist wrote notes, some of them copious. These were later transcribed, not always precisely, as the archivist was sometimes better informed than the artist on certain historical points.

Old Brompton 2530The village of Old Brompton in the late 1820s (“opposite Brompton Heath and Selwood Lane”). A rural spot with a motley collection of houses looking a little like they might be about to collapse. In the house on the left the hindquarters of a horse are visible, and a woman in the window remonstrating with someone. Actually…

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