The Courtauld

We went to the new and beautifully re-instated Courtauld Institute Galleries, having missed their re-opening and then been deterred by Omicron. 

I was very impressed by the way the galleries, which are not easy spaces, being so strong architecturally, have been hung:  in a very lightly historical way on the first floor where the eighteenth-century decoration of the three Council Chambers is so hard to entirely ignore:  and in a much more studiously neutral way on the second floor, where Samuel Courtauld’s great collection of Impressionists looks surprisingly at home in the Great Room, the site once-upon-a-time of the annual Summer Exhibition. There’s also a wonderful new display in a separate room of Antoine Seilern’s Kokoschkas and a small Bloomsbury room to add variety.

I was perfectly prepared to be critical, as there is a long and tricky history to the way these paintings have been installed in the past, but was completely impressed by the quality of the installation, labelling (slightly more academic than is now normal), hang, choice of paint colours and layout, not to mention the extraordinary quality of the collection.


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