THEME: Northern Europe
ILLUSTRATED SEMINARS AND GROUP VISITS
Wednesday 15 January 10:30 – 12:30, Winchester Discovery Centre.
We Will Remember Them: Dr Antonia Whitley
To most of us the name of Edwin Lutyens conjures up images of romantic country
houses, often associated with gardens designed by Gertrude Jekyll. It is not
however for his domestic practice, but also for his architecture of death, that
Lutyens was knighted. Indeed much of his work was designed in connection with
the First World War, in which he was instrumental in setting the standards for the
British and Commonwealth war cemeteries in particular.
Using Lutyen’s work as a launch pad, consideration will be given to a range of
variety of poignant memorials, both public and private, that sought to do justice to
the heroism, sacrifice and patriotism of the young men who lost their lives. We
will study the language of commemoration to gauge how such monuments
expressed the grief of a mourning nation and specifically to ponder on whether in
honouring the dead, these memorials also served the living. The architectural
historian Gavin Stamp has written: “Paradoxically, the struggle that so damaged
European civilization produced some great art and generated some magnificent
architecture”. We see that in these memorials.
Wednesday 29 January VISIT Morris Singer Foundry at Lasham
The origins of the foundry date to 1848 and it is recognised worldwide as theoldest fine art foundry in the world. The foundry works with a number of noted contemporary sculptors. Our visit will coincide with a bronze pouring
Wednesday 12 February 10:30 – 12:30, Winchester Discovery Centre.
Moscow and the Golden Ring: Jane Angelini
This seminar is about Medieval Russia and in particular about the rise of the
principality of Moscovy, which came to supersede Kiev as the capital city. The
historical background to the lecture is the evolution of the Russian people from
their misty beginnings as Viking traders in the 8th century through the late 10th
century, when Prince Vladimir of Kiev adopted the Orthodox branch of
Christianity. It was at this point that the Russians inherited a specific style of
religious art and architecture from Byzantium. The introduction of Orthodoxy from
Byzantium brought with it the centrally planned domed church and the hierarchic
arrangement of holy images inside, the practice of venerating icons and of course
the liturgy itself. With their profound and innate artistic genius, the Russians
adapted and restructured the Byzantine forms of church architecture to blend with
native traditions of wood building and to express their own concepts of universal
power, and they imbued icon painting with a spirit that is markedly Russian, soft
Wednesday 26 February 10:30 – 12:30, Winchester Discovery Centre.
Jheronimus Bosch: Toos de Peyer
The lecture will examine the extraordinary paintings of Jheronimus Bosch (c.1460
-1516) ,who lived and worked in s-Hertogenbosch, a city at the northern edge of
what was then the Burgundian Empire. From this marginal position Bosch
produced totally novel representations which address new issues and concerns.
For the first time in history people on the margins of society, such as pedlars,
gypsies and quacks, enter the central space of paintings, Similarly, in his
representations of hell and hellish temptations, he creates a completely new kind
of devil, inspired by the babewyns in the medieval margins.
Wednesday 12 March 10:30 – 12:30, Winchester Discovery Centre.
Renaissance Nuremberg: Beth Taylor
Nuremberg was the centre of the German Renaissance in the 15th and 16th
centuries, a city whose artistic, humanistic, technological and scientific
endeavours were of far reaching consequence and where the production of works
of art paralleled the city’s strong political and economic position within the Holy
Roman Empire. In this seminar we will consider the work of Albrecht Dűrer, the
city’s most famous son, together with that of his teacher, Michael Wolgemut, and
of his apprentices, Hans von Kulmbach and Hans Baldung Grien. As well as the
paintings, prints, and stained glass designs these artists produced, we will
consider the works of sculpture in stone and wood which adorned the city’s
churches and buildings at this period – works by Adam Kraft, Veit Stoss, Peter
Vischer and Peter Flőtner – and which are still to be seen in the city.
Wednesday 26 March 10:30 – 12:30, Winchester Discovery Centre.
Dutch Painting: the Golden Age and beyond: Beth Taylor
The end of war with Spain in 1648 and the formation of an independent Dutch
Republic was to mark a period of unprecedented cultural growth and material
prosperity in which the bourgeois became the major purchasers of art. A middle
class culture of people who did not speak French or Latin and were not educated
in the humanist regard for classical antiquity meant that the art market was geared
primarily toward producing realist works. These included: genre and still life
paintings (often with symbols that pointed up a moral message); townscapes;
landscapes; seascapes reflecting the importance of their sea-borne trade;
portraits, including group portraits of civic societies; and architectural paintings
showing the interiors of their Protestant places of worship. We will study
paintings by Frans Hals, Jan Steen, Peter de Hooch, Vermeer, Rembrandt, van
Ruisdael and others from this period.
We will also consider later Dutch art. It is generally said that this went into relative
decline from the mid 17th century until the mid 19th century when another form of
realism – G.H Breitner’s paintings of modern city life – marked social and
economic change. Although Van Gogh’s work was to be influenced by the light of
the south, there is a Northern taste for detail evident in his paintings. In the 20th
century, it is the work of the De Stijl painter, Mondrian, which is best known, as
well as the work of the Cobra group in the post war period.
Monday 7 April – Thursday 10 April
WAHG visit to Amsterdam
Details of this tour were distributed in Summer 2013, when bookings were taken.
Please contact Daphne Winning on 01264 810226 to enquire whether any places
have become available.
Wednesday 14 May 10:30 – 12:30, Winchester Discovery Centre.
Jan van Eyck: Gillian White
This is the first of two lectures looking at artists working in the Low Countries in
the fifteenth century, during a great flowering of the arts in northern Europe. Jan
van Eyck was one of the founders of the northern style of realism in painting and
one of its greatest exponents. His work brought together religion, interest in
humanity, symbolism and, above all, a delight in the depiction of illusionistic detail.
This lecture will explore van Eyck’s paintings and the meaning of “realism” when
applied to his art. Works to be examined include “The Arnolfini Double Portrait”
and “The Ghent Altarpiece”.
Wednesday 21 May 10:30 – 12:30, Winchester Discovery Centre.
Rogier van der Weyden: Gillian White
Rogier van der Weyden was another hugely talented artist working in the northern
realistic style. However, when we explore his work we find a more heightened or
stylised form of realism than we saw in the art of Jan van Eyck and a stronger
emphasis on emotional rather than illusionistic realism. The lecture explores the
way in which a great artist accesses the viewer’s sense of emotional or even
spiritual truth. As well as studying a selection of his portraits and religious
paintings, we shall take a close look at one of the most important paintings of this
period, van der Weyden’s Descent from the Cross.
Wednesday 11 June VISIT to Compton Verney
This visit Compton Verney in Warwickshire – an art gallery converted from an
18th century country house – will give members an opportunity to study their
collection of Northern European art with an in-house guide. In addition, we will be
shown their collection of Chinese art as preparation for our autumn programme
which will include seminars on the art of the East. The visit will also give
members the opportunity to view the Henry Moore/Rodin exhibition displayed in
the grounds of the house.
Wednesday 18 June 10:30 – 12:30, Winchester Discovery Centre.
20th century Finnish design for the Decorative arts: Robin Jones
The development of Finnish modern design is linked with the formation of Finland
as an independent country in the early years of the twentieth century. After 1920
Finnish designers looked both to avant garde developments in other parts of
Europe but also to their own cultural traditions and landscapes to create
distinctive and modern forms which were widely influential. This session will
highlight the work of designers such as Alvar Aalto, Kaj Frank, Tapio Wirkkala,
Maija Isola, Antti Nurmesniemi and Eero Aarnio.
An introduction to this season’s lecturers.
Jane is the inspiration behind St James’s Art Tours and is responsible for the planning and
organisation of each tour, whether or not she leads it. She specialises in the cultures of the
Mediterranean world – Classical, Byzantine, Islamic – as well as that of Russia. She graduated in
Russian Studies and took a masters degree in Byzantine & Early Russian Art and Architecture. She
works as a free lance lecturer for a number of organisations, including NADFAS, the Art Fund and
Swan Hellenic Cruises. She speaks several foreign languages and has translated works of 19th
century Russian literature for Penguin Books and Oxford University Press.
Robin is a design historian with a strong interest in the history of domestic interiors and their
furnishings from Europe as well as colonial South Asia. After studying history at Durham University he
spent 12 years as a valuer with Sotheby’s and Phillip’s/Bonhams. He has a postgraduate diploma in
the History of Fine and Decorative Arts and a PhD in furniture history. He is an Associate Professor in
the School of Art and Design at Southampton Solent University and is author of numerous articles on
the decorative arts and design. His book, Interiors of Empire was published in 2007.
Toos de Peyer
Toos de Peyer is a retired lecturer in the History of Art. Her area of expertise is Netherlandish art of
the 15th-17th Centuries. Since her retirement she has specifically focused on the paintings and
drawings of Jheronimus Bosch (c. 1460-1516). She has given a number of conference papers and
lectures on this topic and hopes to live long enough to attend the important Jheronimus Bosch
conference in 2016. This conference will take place in ‘s-Hertogenbosch, the city where the artist lived
and worked. It is one of a number of events with which the city of ‘s-Hertogenbosch will mark the
500th year of the death of its most famous citizen.
Beth studied History at the University of Sussex where she also took a master’s degree in American
Studies. After working as a research historian for a number of years, she switched her career focus to
policy and practice within social care and supported housing. On retirement, she took a degree in Art
History which had been a long term passion. As well as an interest in European and American art,
she has a particular interest in the development of photography as an art medium. Beth has been
coordinator of Winchester Art History Group since the retirement of its founder, Bernard Courtis, in
Dr White has a PhD in Renaissance Studies from Warwick University and an MA in Medieval Studies
from York. She formerly worked for the National Trust as Collections Manager at Hardwick Hall,
Derbyshire. Now based in the Cotswolds, she works as a freelance lecturer, contributing to the MA on
‘The Country House: Art, History and Literature’ at Leicester University, as well as teaching continuing
education classes for Oxford University. Gillian gives talks to a wide circle of groups and is a NADFAS
lecturer. She is particularly interested in the late medieval, Tudor and Elizabethan periods, their
history, architecture and visual arts, as well as in the development of the country house.
Antonia Whitley’s first love is the Renaissance, the Italian Renaissance. She is also keen on the art of
the First World War and has run an MA course on art in the War Studies department at Kings College,
London. She enjoys reviewing exhibitions as well as lecturing for or at the National Gallery.
Antonia has taught art history for over sixteen years to adults of all ages, both newcomers and those
with a background in art. This activity takes place in Italy and in the UK, where she is regularly asked
to speak to Societies and Art History Groups. She loves sharing her enthusiasm with others. Her lec-
tures combine energy with expert knowledge.
She completed her MA and PhD at the Warburg Institute, London University.