Two paintings by one of the first recognised female artists in Britain have been discovered in an antiques store in Paris. The paintings were done by Mary Beale around 1660 and depicted her son Bartholomew. The works of art will be displayed at Tate Britain as part of a display of art from the last 500 years, shown in chronological order.
Beale, who was born in 1633 and died in 1699, was the first woman to become a professional artist in Britain. She opened an art studio alongside her husband who was a civil servant, doing portraits. One of her sons later worked in her gallery, as an assistant. Lost in private collections, the paintings were discovered by an art historian who was browsing the Paris antiques stores. James Mulraine bought the paintings and brought them back to Britain. The exhibition, which includes the lost paintings, is open for viewing from 14th May 2013.
According to the gallery, the reason for the chronological display is that it:
“allows a more neutral view of the range of art being produced at any one historical moment to emerge.”
The work of two other British artists, Henry Moore and William Blake, is also to be featured in new galleries.
When browsing antiques shops, a person never knows what hidden treasure may be discovered, with all items having a story to be told. For those browsing for antique furniture in the UK, there are interesting items like antique desks in Lancashire and the surrounding areas.
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