About Illuminating Objects

A series of small displays focused around one object, the point of Illuminating Objects is to dust off (sometimes quite literally!) these wonderful, unexpected and largely unknown objects. Each object will remain on display for three months.

The project is delivered in partnership with interns from disciplines outside of the History of Art. Their disciplinary backgrounds have included anthropology, theology and the sciences. Partnership institutions are SOAS, King’s College London, the University of Kent in Canterbury, Imperial College and University College London. Illuminating Objects has been running since 2012.

One of the challenges for the Illuminating Objects Interns is to communicate their research in the Gallery and through the possibilities offered by the website and other digital channels.

Sculpture and Decorative Arts at The Courtauld

The Courtauld Gallery’s sculpture and decorative arts collections comprise mainly European works of art and design, dating from Antiquity to the 20th century, and made in a wide variety of materials and techniques. Examples are displayed throughout the Gallery. Among the earliest pieces are Gothic ivory carvings made in France and Northern Europe in the medieval period and Islamic metalwork vessels made in the Middle East from about 1200. The collection’s Renaissance holdings include wonderful examples of ceramics, Venetian glass and marble relief sculpture. The magnificent pair of wedding chests made for a famous merchant family in Florence in the early 1470s is a uniquely complete example of its kind. The collection extends to the 18th and 19th centuries with furniture, silverware and bronze and marble sculpture. Examples of sculpture by Gauguin and Degas can be seen near the paintings by those artists. The sculpture collection continues into the 20th century, with works by important sculptors of the British School.

The Courtauld’s Decorative Arts collection

The Courtauld’s Sculpture collection