The Miniaturist

If you are in the UK you might have watched the tv adaptation of The Miniaturist on the BBC on Boxing Day. It is a two-part series, based on the book of the same title by Jessie Burton. The Miniaturist…

Pleating Wonders: Ruffs

The large ruffs you find in Dutch early seventeenth-century portraits are the results of the time consuming efforts of linen bleaching, sewing, starching and setting. A ruff is constructed from a long strip of fabric, usually very fine linen lawn…

Bitesize Blog: William Larkin

William Larkin Portrait of Richard Sackville, 3rd Earl of Dorset Oil on canvas, 206.3×122.2cm (81 3/16 x 48 1/8″), 1613 Even for Jacobean standards this is over the top. A contemporary wrote at the time that Richard Sackville “dazzled the eyes…

The Waddesdon Portrait of Elizabeth

Something very exciting happened at Waddesdon Manor recently. Amongst the art collection of De Rothchild family, who own the Manor, two late Tudor portraits were found which, after scientific and art historic analysis, were attributed to the celebrated Tudor painter…

Waddesdon Manor

Extravaganza Waddesdon Manor: an extravanganza, over the top, but also wonderful, fun, beautiful and full of treasure. With all its references to art and architectural history it oozes heritage; but of course the whole thing is an art collection housed…

Bitesize Blog: Ferdinand Bol

Ferdinand Bol Portrait of an Unknown Woman Oil on canvas, 106.7 x 91.5 cm, 1644 Ferdinand Bol (1616-1680) was a Dutch old master based in Amsterdam and a pupil of Rembrandt. This painting at Kenwood House in London is one of…

Who is Your Favourite Artist?

This question is often asked but never really answered as I cannot name a single favourite artist. I can’t say I have a favourite artist although I do have a favourite period in art history that is hugely inspirational for…

Bitesize Blog: Dog Asleep

Gerrit Dou Dog Asleep Oil on panel, 6½ x 8½ in. (16.5 x 21.6 cm.) , 1650 This cuddly sleeping dog is tiny. Well, the oil painting is at just 7×9″ (c. 21x16cm). Gerrit Dou was and is famous for…