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Other titles in the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art the Paul Mello series:
Vauxhall Gardens: A Historyby David Coke
Synopses & Reviews
From their early beginnings in the Restoration until the final closure in Queen Victoria's reign, Vauxhall Gardens developed from a rural tavern and place of assignation into a dream-world filled with visual arts and music, and finally into a commercial site of mass entertainment. By the 18th century,and#160;Vauxhall was crucial to the cultural and fashionable life of the country, patronized by all levels of society, from royal dukes to penurious servants.and#160;
In the first book on the subject for over fifty years,and#160;Alan Borg and David E. Coke reveal the teeming life, the spectacular art and the ever-present music of Vauxhall in fascinating detail. Borg and Coke's historical exposition of the entire history of the gardens makes a major contribution to the study of London entertainments, art, music, sculpture, class and ideology. It reveals how Vauxhall linked high and popular culture in ways that look forward to the manner in which both art and entertainment have evolved in modern times.
At the height of the Napoleonic Wars, a new generation of painters led by the precociously talented David Wilkie took London's art world by storm. Their novel approach to the depiction of everyday life marked the beginning a trajectory that links the art of the Age of Revolution with the postmodern culture of today.
What emerged from the imagery of Wilkie and other early 19th-century British genre painters—among them William Mulready, Edward Bird, and the controversial watercolorist Thomas Heaphy—was a sense that common people were increasingly bound up with the exceptional events of history, that traditional boundaries between country and city were melting away, and that a more regularized and dynamic present was everywhere encroaching upon the customary patterns of the past.
About the Author
David H. Solkin is professor of the social history of art, Courtauld Institute of Art. He is the author of Painting for Money: The Visual Arts and the Public Sphere in Eighteenth-Century England and editor of Art on The Line: The Royal Academy Exhibitions at Somerset House 17801836, both published by Yale.
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