Major Benefactors of the College were invited to attend a private drinks reception followed by a curator’s tour of the Dutch Masters exhibition at the Queen's Gallery on 12th February, courtesy of Desmond Shawe-Taylor, LVO (1974, English), Surveyor of the Queen’s Pictures. The exhibition 'Masters of the Everyday: Dutch Masters in the Age of Vermeer' presents 27 masterpieces from the Royal Collection.
'The evening at the Queen's Gallery was a delight. After an expert commentary like Desmond Shawe-Taylor's, at once light-hearted and erudite, one can only emerge enriched - both in knowledge and in what one has seen in the paintings themselves. He shone a light in the foreground for us, as subtle and illuminating as the background lighting in the de Hooch and the Vermeer we enjoyed.'
Nick Perry (1974, Maths & Philosophy)
'It was a beautifully organised and very enjoyable event. Desmond Shawe-Taylor spoke with great verve and from deep knowledge. His theme was the way in which Dutch painting came up in the world from being regarded as commonplace to being recognised as profound. The Queen's Gallery provided a magnificent setting for the Dutch masterpieces, and a stunning backdrop against which to talk to fellow-guests. As a member of a naval family, and myself a former National Service naval rating, I was particularly struck by the many paintings of naval warfare, and their utter contrast with the stillness of the Dutch interiors, which included a famous Vermeer.'
John Fawcett, CMG (1949, Classics)