This March, art consultant and portrait miniature specialist Emma Rutherford will be curating and exhibiting a collection of Edwardian portrait miniatures from 1870 to 1970, from private collections. The exhibition is set to coincide with the release of a book written by Roger and Carmela Arturi Phillips, “A Dictionary of Miniature Painters 1870 -1970”, and will take place at the leading Old Master gallery Philip Mould & Co, 29 Dover Street, London, W1S 4NA.
Portrait miniatures, after experiencing a dip in popularity upon the invention of photography, enjoyed a revival in the early 20th century, and this exhibition aims to reflect this well known era through the ‘lens’ of the artist, and the social legacy of miniatures. The exhibition will showcase the best of the elegant Edwardian society portrait miniature through to more contemporary examples reliant upon both photography and sittings.
The collection contains miniatures by many great practitioners, including artists Charles James Turrell and Gertrude Massey, both of whom are represented in the Royal Collection.
Works by Turrell include a painting of Princess Alexandra in Court dress, dated 1886. Another highlight pays homage to a champion boxer, dated 1907, as well as a portrait of a music hall star by Miss May Hartog.
Curator Emma Rutherford states “This is the first time an exhibition of portrait miniatures has been devoted to this period.. Later miniatures, particularly those from the Edwardian period, have increased in value almost fourfold over the past ten years, with their particular aesthetic appealing to a wider audience. A book devoted to this neglected period is long overdue and I am sure will be a great academic resource as well as a thing of beauty.”
“A Dictionary of Miniature Painters 1870 -1970”, written by the collectors, is priced at £65, and lists over 2300 miniature painters working during this period, with sections focusing on the Revival around the turn of the 20th Century, the art of the Photominiature, and an appendix of signatures and monograms . It is set to be the most informative and detailed publication of its kind on Edwardian miniatures, and will be available to purchase at the gallery, bookstores, and www.amazon.co.uk.