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A Great and Noble Design

Old Royal Naval College / Anya Matthews

  • 13th September - 28th October 2016
  • Stephen Lawrence Gallery

A new exhibition exploring the life of the British decorative artist Sir James Thornhill and his masterpiece – the Painted Hall at Greenwich (painted between 1708 and 1727).

The exhibition, curated by the Old Royal Naval College, explores the story of the commission through numerous preparatory sketches made by the artist, including rarely-seen original drawings on loan from the National Maritime Museum.

‘A Great and Noble Design’ coincides with the start of a major conservation project on this extraordinary cycle of baroque mural paintings. A fully-illustrated catalogue of sketches has been produced to accompany the display.

Three newly-conserved, original sketches by Thornhill for the Painted Hall will be on display in the exhibition, alongside new research undertaken into the paintings in the light of the upcoming conservation work on the Painted Hall’s ceiling.

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