Art for the Nation The Eastlakes and the Victorian Art World Susanna Avery-Quash, Julie Sheldon

Publication date:
15 Jun 2011
National Gallery London
304 pages: 229 x 152mm
28 color + 14 b-w illus.

As prominent members of the Victorian cultural and artistic world, Sir Charles and Lady Elizabeth Eastlake, along with their nephew Charles Locke Eastlake, enjoyed the friendship and support of influential figures including Prince Albert, Sir Thomas Lawrence, J.M.W. Turner, and Sir Robert Peel.

This fascinating original biography brings the unique personality of each of the Eastlakes into sharp focus while also exploring their important contributions during the early days of the National Gallery. Charles Eastlake, an artist and connoisseur, was chosen to be not only the President of the Royal Academy from 1850, but also the National Gallery's first Director in 1855. With his capable wife, a literary critic and art historian in her own right, he travelled throughout Europe acquiring significant paintings for the Gallery and implementing important changes to their display and description. Nephew Charles, an architect and popularizer of the Arts and Crafts style, was Keeper at the National Gallery from 1878 to 1898. tells the remarkable story of the Eastlake family's devotion to art and to the National Gallery during its crucial formative years.Art for the Nation

Susanna Avery-Quash is Research Curator in the History of Collecting at the National Gallery, London. Julie Sheldon is Reader in Art History at Liverpool John Moores University.

"A richly informative double biography."—Michael Hall, "Gives readers superb insights into the world of the intellectual elite that did so much in this most extraordinary period of our country’s history."—Country Life

Contemporary Review

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Find out more in this introduction with Susanna Avery-Quash, Research Fellow in the Historyof Collecting at the National Gallery.