Edward Lear Exhibition in CorfuMaria Georgopoulou
Thirty-one watercolors by British poet and landscape artist Edward Lear from the collections of the Gennadius Library will be lent to the Corfu Museum of Asian Art in the summer. The Museum is organizing an exhibition entitled Edward Lear & the Ionian Islands at the Palace of St Michael and St George from 25 May to 31 August 2012. See edward-lear.gr.
The exhibition is supported by the A. G. Leventis, the Bodossaki and the J. F. Costopoulos Foundations and it is curated by Despina Zernioti, Director of The Corfu Museum of Asian Art.
The exhibition will mark the two hundredth anniversary of the birth of Edward Lear (1812 – 1888). Edward Lear is best known to the world as the author of such works as The Book of Nonsense, including the famous “Owl and the Pussycat,” and travel books. He was, however, by profession a landscape painter and the Gennadeion is fortunate to own two hundred of his Greek drawings. His sketches and watercolors are prized by collectors and observers for their spontaneity and almost impressionistic quality. His whimsical notes remind the viewer that this was the same Lear who wrote such delightful comic poetry. In 1929 a selection of 192 Lear sketches was offered to Joannes Gennadius, who persuaded the School to purchase them. The cost was 25 English pounds, about 75 pence each! Ten years later the Library was able to add another thirteen sketches to the collection (at a considerably higher price, it may be noted).