Gail-Nina Anderson: Burne-Jones' 'Laus Veneris'
February | Monday 3rd | 18:00
A lecture by Gail-Nina Anderson
'Burne-Jones’ “Laus Veneris” – Enchanted Interior or Pre-Raphaelite Problem?
The dream-like atmosphere and decorative detail of “Laus Veneris” combine to make it a jewel in the Laing’s collection, but it is also a work that asks us to confront some of the paradoxes of the Pre-Raphaelite artistic philosophy. Burne-Jones, a second generation Pre-Raphaelite, never attempted the contemporary realism that had initially characterised that movement, but instead brought a greater awareness of Renaissance art to the creation of a sophisticated, individual style. “Laus Veneris” reflects an output that re-created the world as an elegant (if bloodless) fairy-tale, forged a successful relationship with the practical requirements of his friend William, Morris’s design firm, and yet through the refinements of its draughtsmanship heralded aspects of abstraction and Modernism.
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