Collecting policy

Leighton House continues to make additions to the collection that will enhance the public displays and increase the public’s awareness of Leighton's life and work. 

 

We welcome loans or gifts in the following principal areas:

  • Paintings, sculpture and works on paper by Frederic Leighton
  • Personal ephemera relating to Leighton
  • Archives relating to Leighton and papers relevant to the museum’s history
  • Objects and works of art formerly belonging to Leighton
  • Works by artists who lived and worked in the vicinity of Leighton House Museum
  • during the High Victorian period known as ‘The Holland Park Circle’, including, but
  • not limited to; G F Watts, Luke Fildes, Marcus Stone, Val Prinsep, Colin Hunter,
  • the Thornycroft family and Albert Moore.
  • Archives, plans, photographs, drawings relating to the homes of the ‘Holland Park
  • Circle’ of artists

Valuations 

Please note that the Museum cannot provide advice on obtaining a valuation for objects. This is partly for reasons of professional ethics (see Museums Association Code of Ethics, items 2.14 and 3.18), but mainly because museum curators, as public servants, are not market valuation experts. Instead we suggest that you seek a valuation from a professional valuer, auctioneer or dealer.

 

Contact

Senior Curator: Daniel Robbins

Tel: 020 7471 9152

E-mail: Daniel.Robbins@rbkc.gov.uk


Missing treasures

Aitchison SideboardAitchison CupboardThe Aitchison Furniture

George Aitchison (1825-1910), the architect of Leighton House, designed seven pieces of furniture specifically for the interiors. These were ebonised in keeping with the black paintwork that was so much a feature of the house and were inlaid with the same motifs that can be seen in the door architraves.  Contemporary accounts confirm that Leighton himself was closely involved with their design and they were an integral part of the interiors. This furniture was sold as part of Leighton's sale at Christie's in the summer after he died. Aitchison himself bought a bookcase and a cabinet.  The artist, collector and dealer Charles Fairfax Murray bought a second cabinet. None of this furniture has ever been positively identified.  The museum is very keen to trace where any of these pieces might be. We know what they looked like and illustrations of the Studio cabinet and dining room sideboard are shown here.

The sideboard was an enormous piece. Photographs indicate that although sold in 1896,  it remained in situ for some years afterwards. This may be one of the pieces of furniture offered back to the museum in the 1930s - an offer that was declined. 

If you have any knowledge of these items, please contact Daniel Robbins, Senior Curator

 

 

Decorational CarvingDevotional carving from the Studio

One of the most distinctive objects in the studio was an elaborately carved and gilded representation of the Virgin and Child in an architectural setting. It was sold on Weds July 8 1896, Lot 229 and bought by the dealer Robert Dunthorne for £46. The catalogue entry described the object as 'An Italian Shrine, carved and gilt, enclosing the Virgin and Child, angels supporting a crown, canopy and columns with cherubs and shells, pierced Gothic designs, with inscription above and scrolls below, engraved arabesques at the side, 3ft 4 in. wide'.


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