A few sites on Victorian England

local/cache-vignettes/L290xH175/Victorian_Web-f743d.jpg18/11/09 – Internet websites – English Art – Internet is a veritable goldmine for art historians. The following are links to sites specialized in English Art during the Victorian era.

The first, Victorian Web, focuses not only on fine arts but also literature, history, science, philosophy, theatre… This is truly an encyclopedia on 19th century England, offering an incredible wealth of information, created and maintained by university scholars. Remaining strictly within the chronological confines of The Art Tribune and in order to understand the full import of this site, readers may look simply at the section devoted to architecture. For this subject alone, the page refers to 86 pages dealing with different architects most of which in turn refer to biographies and catalogues of works filled with entries and photographs ; there are also pages devoted to techniques, architecture in the British colonies, styles(Gothic Revival, Classicism), types of buildings… Painting, sculpture, illustrations, decorative arts and photography are treated just as thoroughly.

Four other sites each highlight a specific artist.

local/cache-vignettes/L290xH176/Rossetti-c2eec.jpgDante Gabriel Rossetti Archives : This presents a catalogue of almost all of Rossetti’s production, be it paintings, drawings, art objects, poems or prose texts. Even his translations (notably of Dante) are included. The literary texts, along with his correspondence, are transcribed and many of manuscripts are accessible directly through photographs. Each work is accompanied by an entry. The site was created by Jerome McGann who teaches at the University of Virginia.

local/cache-vignettes/L290xH169/William_Morris_Society-5f9e7.jpgThe William Morris Society : As the name indicates, the William Morris Society is devoted to the study of this artist who was, like Rossetti, a writer. Although the section on William Morris’ art is rather meager, referring the reader to only a few photographs, not always of high quality and lacking entries, the highlight of this site is that it offers all of the articles in integral version from The Journal of William Morris Studies from 1961 to 2007 in PDF, accessible via issue summaries, author’s name or alphabetical order of the titles. Many of William Morris’ writings can be found on another website : Morris Online Edition.

Simeon Solomon Research Archive : Here again, this site was created by a university scholar (Roberto C. Ferrari) and is devoted to the Pre-Raphaelite artist and writer, Simeon Solomon. Although not as rich as the two previous sites, readers will nevertheless find a short biography and many pictures of Solomon’s works.

George Frederick Watts : Unlike the other sites, the author here is not clearly identified. The biography is apparently taken from Wikipedia, not a reliable criterion. However, there are extensive photographs of his works (392).

Didier Rykner, mercredi 18 novembre 2009

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