British Baroque

British Baroque – 13th October 2023

The Day of Special Interest was presented by Dr Amy Lim, Curator, Faringdon Collection.

The study day started by looking at “The Baroque Country House”. Many of Britain’s best-loved country houses were created in the ‘Baroque’ period (c. 1660-1720).  Dr. Lim discussed some of the most iconic houses of the period, (including Chatsworth, Petworth, and Blenheim) and the patrons who created them, and look at some of the highlights of their sumptuous interiors, gardens and collections, addressing the question: What is ‘Baroque’?

In her second lecture, “Queens, consorts and courtiers”, Dr Lim discussed female art patrons in Baroque Britain.  What was the role of women in British Baroque art?  In an era when married women’s property automatically belonged to their husbands, could women still be patrons?  Dr. Lim looked at some of the most important works of art and architecture commissioned by women and consider how they used art to carve out their position in society.

After lunch, her third lecture “Objects in focus” looked at some of the finest artworks of the British Baroque.  For example: Rubens’ ceiling paintings for the Banqueting House, Whitehall, a set of magnificent tapestries commissioned by the Duke of Devonshire for Chatsworth, and Godfrey Kneller’s Hampton Court Beauties.