Lecture Programme

Lit & Phil Lecture

This talk is organised by the Lit & Phil (you don't need to be a member in order to attend any of their public events), and tickets cost £4 per talk, from the Lit & Phil Library, 23 Westgate Road, Newcastle upon Tyne, NE1 1SE, in person or over the phone (0191) 232 0192. It is advisable to book seats in advance; if you reserve a ticket and are subsequently unable to attend, please let us know as we often have a waiting list.

Burne-Jones' 'Laus Veneris'

Burne-Jones' Laus Veneris
Monday 3rd February, 6.00 pm

Burne-Jones' Laus Veneris - Enchanted Interior or Pre-Raphaelite Problem?

The dream-like atmosphere and decorative detail of Laus Veneris combine to make it a jewel in the Laing's collection, but it is also a work that asks us to confront some of the paradoxes of the Pre-Raphaelite artistic philosophy.

Burne-Jones, a second generation Pre-Raphaelite, never attempted the contemporary realism that had initially characterised that movement, but instead brought a greater awareness of Renaissance art to the creation of a sophisticated, individual style. Laus Veneris reflects an output that re-created the world as an elegant (if bloodless) fairy-tale, forged a successful relationship with the practical requirements of his friend William Morris's design firm, and yet through the refinements of its draughtsmanship heralded aspects of abstraction and Modernism.