Thursday, 5 February 2015


Wallace House opened in Hereford House, London in 1890. It was formed in the main by Richard, fourth Marwuess of Hertford but largly increased by his son, Sir Richard Wallace (1818-1890). The collection is richly presented by the arts of France in the eighteenth century, extended in sculpture back to the thirteenth century and forward in painting to the third quarter of the nineteenth.

The collection takes its character from the tastes and opportunities of the fourth Marquess, who lived in Paris and was a devotee of the arts of France in the eighteenth century.

This is a polite way of expressing the taste and the content in this collection. The quote comes from The Wallace Collectn Catalogues Pictures and Drawings (illustrations), printed for the trustees by William Clowes Ltd and sold at Hereford House, London, 1953. The illustrations are grainy in black and white.

The catalogue is lovely but I have no idea where I picked up. More amazing is that it has survived the two last house clearings and the last five years boxing of books. I have no wonder nobody wanted to buy if but I am glad that I still have it. I will keep it - although is almost as good and provides much better information.

With it, I can over-dose on putty and sentimental half naked shepardesses when ever I want to.

As well as adoringly obseve The Laughing Cavalier by Frans Hals, The Rainbow Landscape by My boy Rubens, some Velazques, some Rembrandts, a good Memling and a nice collection of the lowlandeers - some de Hooch, de Vois, de Hondecoeter and van Ruisdael.

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