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Courtauld Gallery

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  • 1 Review on “Courtauld Gallery”

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    • Stevie
      3 years ago

      The Courtauld Gallery is sited under the arch at the entrance to the Somerset House complex at the Aldwych. Through the arch the piazza opens out in front of you. Go further and through another arch you come to the terrace overlooking the Embankment and the Thames (there’s a café in the summer and one in the basement of the main building). But keep all this until after visiting the jewels in the gallery, the result of gifts and bequests by leading collectors of the 19th and 20th centuries, including Samuel Courtauld (industrialist and philanthropist, who developed his family’s textile business, still prominent today).

      Once the home of the Royal Academy of Art, the eclectic collection held by the Courtauld is now spread through the historic rooms. It comprises a fascinating range of art works from the Renaissance to the 20th century, but is probably most visited for the large and varied collection of Impressionists and Post-Impressionists, including the highest number of Cezanne works in the country. Those interested in the Bloomsbury group will find remembrances of them here too. There are also many drawings, prints and sculptural works.

      Not the least of the delights of this gallery are the small exhibitions held in two rooms on the top floor, reached by a beautiful winding staircase (by lift for those so inclined). Big exhibitions are tiring and it can be difficult to take in all that is shown (or not to be worn out long before reaching the last room) but these small ones can be enjoyed in full as the end can be seen from the outset.

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