The Art of Mary Linwood

The Art of Mary Linwood : Embroidery and Cultural Agency in Late Georgian Britain

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When British textile artist and gallery owner Mary Linwood died in 1845 just shy of 90 years old, her estate was worth the equivalent of $4,000,000 in today's currency. As someone who made, but didn't sell, embroidered replicas of famous artworks after artists such as Gainsborough, Reynolds, Stubbs, and Morland, how did she accumulate so much money? From admission charges to her long-lived London gallery, which featured copies of well-known paintings by these popular artists. Linwood used props and specially designed rooms for her replicas to ensure that her visitors had an entertaining, educational, and kinetic tour, similar to what Madame Tussaud would do one generation later. The gallery's focus on picturesque painters provided her London visitors with an idyllic imaginary journey through the countryside. Its emphasis on quintessentially British artists provided a unifying focus for a country that had recently emerged from the threat of Napoleonic invasion.

The Art of Mary Linwood: Embroidery and Cultural Agency in Late Georgian Britain is the first book on Leicester textile artist Mary Linwood (1755-1845) and catalogue of her work. It relies on her gallery guides and previously unpublished letters between Linwood and her contemporaries, such as Birmingham inventor Matthew Boulton and Queen Charlotte. By examining Linwood's replicas and their accompanying objects through the lens of material culture, this volume provides a much-needed contribution to the scholarship on women and cultural agency in the early nineteenth century.
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Product details

  • Hardback | 240 pages
  • 156 x 234 x 25mm | 454g
  • New York
  • English
  • 1501343297
  • 9781501343292

About Heidi A Strobel

Heidi A. Strobel is Associate Professor of Art History and Curator of the Peters-Margedant House, University of Evansville, USA.
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