Charles II

Art & Power

Edited by Rufus Bird and Martin Clayton

Charles II

Edited by Rufus Bird and Martin Clayton

Distributed for Royal Collection Trust

496 pages | 400 color plates | 9 x 10 1/2 | © 2018
Cloth $95.00 ISBN: 9781909741447 Published February 2018 For Sale in USA and Canada Only
The Restoration of the English monarchy in 1660 led to a resurgence of the arts in England, and Charles II became a leading patron and collector throughout the mid- and late seventeenth century. Fine and decorative arts served not only as furnishings for the royal residences but also as a means of glorifying the restored monarchy and reinforcing the position of Charles II as the rightful king.
 
Sumptuously illustrated, Charles II: Art & Power looks at the art and culture of the court of Charles II, as well as James II, who followed his brother as a liberal patron. It includes an exploration of the theme of power throughout the reigns of these monarchs, and looks at ritual and decorative uses of art and the development of a distinct "English Baroque." Among the many works of art showcased here are the replacement Crown Jewels made for the coronation of Charles II in 1661, John Michael Wright’s monumental portrait of Charles II in his coronation robes, the glittering gilt plate that adorned the altar of Westminster Abbey during the coronation, Charles II’s collection of Italian Old Master paintings and drawings, including by Leonardo da Vinci, and many spectacular furnishings from the Palace of Whitehall and St James’s Palace.
 
Published to accompany a major exhibition at the Queen’s Gallery, Buckingham Palace, Charles II: Art & Power matches an explanatory text with more than 400 lavish full-color illustrations that reveal the remarkable scope of Charles II and James II’s collecting.
 
Contents
Genealogical Table
 
Introduction
1. Execution to Restoration
2. Coronation and Ceremony
3. Painters at Court
4. Architectural Patronage
5. Palace Furnishings
6. Collecting Old Master Paintings
7. Collecting Old Master Drawings
8. Printmaking and the Circulation of Images
9. The Libraries of Charles II
10. Intellectual and Cultural Life
11. James II, the Glorious Revolution and the Stuarts in Exile
 
Notes
Bibliography
Index
Acknowledgements
Picture Credits
Review Quotes
Guardian
“Beautiful, funny, strange and grotesque . . . . Good fun and fascinating history . . . . Absorbing.”
For more information, or to order this book, please visit https://www.press.uchicago.edu
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