'Britain and the Collecting of Impressionist and Post-Impressionist Paintings': Lecture by Christopher Lloyd

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The story of the collecting of Impressionist and Post-Impressionist art in this country is a dramatic one. A strong national school of painting, a traditional prejudice against France, and a fear of the avant-garde were the principal reasons why British collectors held back while their American counterparts had no such reservations. Only a few artists, critics, and collectors in Britain were sympathetic to developments in French art, but they found it difficult to alter public opinion. In the end, during the 1920s and 1930s, it was only the courage and enthusiasm of certain individuals – Sir Hugh Lane, Samuel Courtauld and the sisters Gwendoline and Margaret Davies – who saved Britain from cultural disgrace and ignominy by forming truly outstanding collections of Impressionist and Post-Impressionist paintings that are now one of the glories of our public galleries. Christopher Lloyd tells the remarkable story in this lecture, which will be followed by afternoon tea served in the Museum.

As a special addition to Christopher Lloyd’s lecture later in the afternoon, visitors are invited to the official opening of an exhibition of ArtFunded works at Falmouth Art Gallery. A brief introduction to the works, by Director Brian Stewart, will take place at 2pm. Visitors then wishing to walk to the National Maritime Museum (about a km away) for the lecture at 3.15pm, will be stewarded by Art Fund volunteers.