Charles I: King and Collector
On Saturday, a group from St. Benet’s visited the latest exhibition at the Royal Academy about the art collection of Charles I.
Lecture by Fr. Nigel
The day began at church with an excellent lecture by Fr. Nigel, who spoke about the historical background to the exhibition. We learnt how Charles I had encountered the great art collection of the Hapsburg court before he became King, and this had prompted him to grow a rival collection. There was then a sad moment as we reflected on the barbarous tyranny of the Great Rebellion, and how the collection was then sold off.
Spirits were lifted as we arrived in the courtyard of Burlington House, and saw a poster of the great triptych of St. Charles. The collection itself contains many paintings collected and commissioned by the Martyr King. Everyone had their own favourites, from the excitement of seeing great masterpieces by Titian – to my own favourite, van Dyck’s portrait of his late Majesty at the Hunt.
Discussion and lunch
After the exhibition, we made our way to Brown’s in Mayfair, where we enjoyed a hearty lunch and discussed what we had seen. Tamia was asked to sum up the exhibition in two words and she said it was ‘adventurous learning’, which we all agreed.
Thank you to Fr. Nigel for organising such a splendid day out!