A free exhibition focusing for the first time on the artist's gold drawing practice.
The exhibition Evelyn De Morgan: The Gold Drawings (11 March - 27 August) explores De Morgan’s unique practice of making gold drawings, showcasing 13 artworks loaned by the Trustees of the De Morgan Foundation and Victoria Dolorosa from the Leighton House collection.
This exhibition will be the first since 1896 to display a group of beautiful artworks made in brilliant gold pigment on dark grey woven paper. De Morgan initially discovered this technique through Edward Burne-Jones but her works went beyond this initial inspiration. Using solid blocks of pure gold pigment and grinding them to a powder, she invented crayons and paints that she then specifically applied to the production of her drawings, which remain luminous today.
Featuring angels, saints, biblical figures and mythological deities, these drawings celebrate those who are in some way superhuman, or close to godly. Depicting her subjects in gold suggests De Morgan made the drawings to possess talismanic qualities.
Why are these drawings special?
De Morgan created these drawings using materials of her own invention, making them unique.
Unlike her other drawings, which were usually sketches made in preparation for an oil painting, De Morgan saw her gold drawings as artworks in their own right and exhibited them in her lifetime.
Only 17 of these drawings are known to survive and this exhibition presents 11 of them.
Supported by the Dr. Lee MacCormick Edwards Charitable Foundation.
Curated by Sarah Hardy, Director of the De Morgan Museum.
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