The Course / The Decorative Arts of Europe (1500-2000) Baroque 3/8

January 24, 2019 @ 10:45 am – 12:45 pm
The Coure at The University Womens Club
2 Audley Square
Mayfair, London W1K
Mary Bromley
020 7266 7815

Established in 1994, The Course offers exciting Art History, Literature and Music lectures.

In this 8 part series, we will see how in the European tradition, the status of “fine art” tends to be much higher than that of the “decorative arts” though the beauty and virtuosity of the latter can be spell-binding. This is why we have a “temple” to fine art in the centre of London – the National Gallery – while “everything else” is in the Victoria and Albert Museum – which was on the fringes of London when it was built. The difference is also reflected in the huge gap between the market prices of the two arts. Why are the decorative arts undervalued in this way and what are their virtues? This series of lectures explores this intriguing subject.

Furniture in the Baroque Age

Furniture came into its own in the seventeenth century when the tradition of cabinetmaking got underway. New types of object reflect dramatically changing life styles; the furnishing of private rooms, for instance, was unprecedented. And exotic materials, such as ebony and turtleshell, reflect Europeans ambitions with regard to the New World.