Description - Sir John Soane's Museum by Peter Thornton
When Sir John Soane's house in Lincoln's Inn Fields was presented to the nation as a museum in 1837, it contained a remarkable collection of objects and works of art which had been amassed over his lifetime from his travels and his friends and contacts. The Hogarths and the Turners are well known, but there is also a vast number of drawings, clocks, models, manuscripts and objets d'art that were displayed throughout the house, and that represent more accurately the breadth of Soane's tastes and interests. For this book, the curators of the museum have brought together 120 objects ranging from paintings to bills for Axminster carpets. A commentary accompanies each picture, relating the story behind the object's acquisition or arrangement. The book follows the layout of the museum, and fine watercolours, executed by Soane's own assistants, as well as contemporary photographs, introduce the main interiors of the house. Soane was at the centre of artistic activity in the late Georgian period, and his collections reflect the intellectual preoccupations of the time.
In addition to this, the decoration of his house is typical of the educated taste of one of the greatest architects of that age. Peter Thornton has been curator of Sir John Soane's Museum since 1984. Helen Dorey is assistant curator and researcher at the museum.
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Laurence King Publishing
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Book Reviews - Sir John Soane's Museum by Peter Thornton