Sunday, 27 March 2011

Wallace Collection and Hyde Park on Sunday

One of my favourite museums in London is The Wallace Collection. The Wallace Collection is a national museum in an historic London town house. In 25 galleries are unsurpassed displays of French 18th century painting, furniture and porcelain with superb Old Master paintings and a world class armoury. 

The Wallace Collection is a national museum which displays the wonderful works of art collected in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries by the first four Marquesses of Hertford and Sir Richard Wallace, the son of the 4th Marquess. It was bequeathed to the British nation by Sir Richard's widow, Lady Wallace, in 1897.

Displayed at Hertford House, the main London townhouse of its former owners, the Wallace Collection presents its outstanding collections in a sumptuous but approachable manner which is an essential part of its charm. It is probably best known for its paintings by artists such as Titian, Rembrandt, Hals (The Laughing Cavalier) and Velázquez and for its superb collections of eighteenth-century French paintings, porcelain, furniture and gold boxes, probably the best to be found anywhere outside France. There are also splendid medieval and Renaissance objects, including Limoges enamels, maiolica, glass and bronzes, as well as the finest array of princely arms and armour in Britain, featuring both European and Oriental objects.

unfortunately I am on all the pictures, so I had to crop this one.
It is a real house filled with the antique and beautiful things. It's like moving back in time to late XVIII century Paris and France. The clocks are ticking and playing unique sounds every fifteen or thirty minutes - in every room there's different one! I became familiar with this place after Mother wanted to see one of the Delaroche portraits showing Virgin Mary. Apparently, the model was Izabella Potocka - Polish aristocrat living in Paris during the time when Poland was non-existent. Mother loves her and she read almost every book on her, so it was great to actually see the portrait she was reading about and saw it in the book!

Boyfriend and me cycled to there today from our usual spot - St John's Wood - that's the nearest docking station from us. This time we took a different route and cycled through Regent's Park - there is a footpath available for cyclists too! Then we entered Marylebone High Street and passed by the old AM's flat, where her sister currently lives. It was great to cycle on the Sunday morning - there streets were mostly empty, I think that the time change had something to do with it!

We went out early today, because on 11.30am was a free Public Tour around the place. A very lovely woman told us a little bit of history of the place and we covered few major pieces of exhibition. Now I want to buy a book about Madame de Pompadour - I had no idea she was such a vital person in promoting arts. 

Afterwards, we grabbed a quick lunch - vegetarian Sunday roast - and went to see Limitless. I liked the trailers, I read few reviews and I heard that the movie is on top of the list in the USA. To be honest, I was disappointed. I was expecting something ground-breaking, but it was an action movie. In my opinion, there was no need to focus so much on fights, blood and chopped hands. The idea behind the script was great, but I think the screenplay had been lost somewhere along the way. Unfortunately it's a typical guy movie. 

The weather was so nice and it was barely 3pm when we walked outside, so after quick chat we've chosen to take a stroll in Hyde Park. It was packed. On Speaker's Corner, people listening and just general madness, at The Serpentine (a huge artificial lake in the middle, created for the Queen Caroline in 1730) people were paddling in boats and the birds were just mad with happiness. We walked all the way to the South Kensington and Harrods, then turn left to Green Park. We walked for 3 hours and I could certainly feel it in my legs. But it's great to be so tired.


  1. Beautiful pictures, makes me very nostalgic for London, I love the swan.


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