The exhibition will be arranged in four main chronological sections, charting the development of the Aesthetic Movement in art and design through the decades from the 1860s to the 1890s. As well as paintings, prints and drawings, the show will include examples of all the 'artistic' decorative arts, together with drawings, designs and photographs, as well as portraits, fashionable dress and jewellery of the era. Literary life will be represented by some of the most beautiful books of the day, whilst a number of set-pieces will reveal the visual world of the Aesthetes, evoking the kind of rooms and ensembles of exquisite objects through which they expressed their sensibilities.
William Eden Nesfield
Made by James Forsyth
Ebonised wood, with gilded and fretted decoration; painted panels of Japanese silk paper
Museum no. W.37-1972
Nesfield inserted panels of Japanese silk paper into an ebonised wooden frame decorated with stylised chrysanthemums and other Japanese motifs.
Made by Johnstone, Norman & Co.
Mahogany, with cedar and ebony veneer, inlay of several woods, ivory and abalone shell
Museum no. W.25:1-1980
This armchair was designed for a 'Greek parlour' and belonged to Henry Gourdon Marquand, the second director of the Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York. Museum no. W.25:1, 2-1980
Pair of vases with sgraffito decoration
Edward William Godwin
Probably made by William Watt
Slipware, sgraffito decoration
Museum no. C.1-2008
Purchased with the assistance of The Art Fund
These are the only known examples of three-dimensional ceramics by E.W.Godwin.
'An Open Book'
Museum no. 42-1884
Albert Moore worked out his ideas for a painting by making extensive preparatory studies. This study is for his painting Reading Aloud (1883-4).