Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Kenwood House Interiors

John and I entered Kenwood House from the rear entrance to visit it's fine collection of paintings.

We were immediately directed to the upstairs to see the Suffolk collection of 17th century, Jacobean paintings; portraits of the Suffolk family mostly by William Larkin. We had to hurry because they were going to close the upper rooms because of a shortage of volunteer staff.

Here is John's detail of the charming bench we passed on our way to the stairs.

This is Larkin's portrait of Richard Sackville, 3rd Earl of Dorset, 1613. He was apparently a dissolute fellow and I would say certainly a fop, judging by his opulent attire.

John got this nice detail of his footwear.

A portrait of Lady Elizabeth Rich, c. 1615, in the same room with its rectory red walls.
In the next room Catherine Knevet, Countess of Suffolk, c.1615, presided over the fireplace.

John seemed more interested in this fellow

Particularly his footwear again.

Here's another detail of costume that caught John's eye.

Downstairs we found architect Robert Adams' Neoclassical masterpiece

The Great Library.

Ah, here is Marguerite Hyde, the 19th Countess of Suffolk in her portrait by American painter, John Singer Sargent. It was she that bequeathed these paintings to the Nation! Thank you, Marguerite!

Now let's slip into what was the Dining Room of the house. The tour group were admiring the famous self-portait by Rembrandt, to the right, making it impossible for me to record it for you, so

Let's join John in admiring Vermeer's last painting, Guitar Player, in the same room.

In the Breakfast room, featuring Victorian paintings

John loved this small sketch in oil by John Constable. He said, "I think it's the best Constable sketch we've seen in London this trip". At this point we finished our tour. Our apologies if we missed one of your favourite paintings but I'm sure you know that each visit to a wonderful house and collection like this is a new experience!


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