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Capella Imperfeita; The Towers, seen from the Interior

  • Object:

    photograph

  • Place of origin:

    Batalha (photographed)

  • Date:

    1867 (photographed)
    1868 (published)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Thompson, Charles Thurston, born 1816 - died 1868 (photographer)
    Arundel Society (publisher)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Albumen print in bound album

  • Museum number:

    E.2239:19-1997

  • Gallery location:

    Prints & Drawings Study Room, room 512M, case MX17, shelf X, box 879

Charles Thurston Thompson was the V&A's first Official Museum Photographer, in charge of the Museum's photographic operations from 1856 until his death in 1868. In addition to photographing museum objects and objects on loan, he also photographed great works of art and architecture on dedicated photographic campaigns abroad.

This is one of seven sets of Thurston Thompson's series of photographs of the Monastery of Batalha, Portugal in the V&A collection. The series was published shortly after his death by the Arundel Society, sanctioned by the Science and Art Department, (under the authority of which the V&A was originally established). Available to artists, amateurs and collectors through a subscription service, these volumes were also acquired by the Science and Art Department for the use of schools of art.

Of these seven volumes, seven are bound, the other two sets are composed of loose plates, with some additional plates not included in the bound volumes and marked as proofs. The various stamps and presentation formats demonstrate the multiple ways photographs were circulated not only throughout the museum, but to the larger community of scholars, artists and connoisseurs.

Physical description

A sepia-coloured photograph of portions of archways, with a view of two towers, plate 19 in an album bound in blue leather of 20 photographs and letterpress title page, essay and order form.

Place of Origin

Batalha (photographed)

Date

1867 (photographed)
1868 (published)

Artist/maker

Thompson, Charles Thurston, born 1816 - died 1868 (photographer)
Arundel Society (publisher)

Materials and Techniques

Albumen print in bound album

Marks and inscriptions

'19. CAPELLA IMPERFEITA; THE TOWERS, VIEW FROM THE INTERIOR'
printed label affixed to bottom of page

Dimensions

Height: 385 mm page, Width: 475 mm page

Descriptive line

Photograph by Charles Thurston Thompson, 'Capella Imperfeita; The Towers, seen from the Interior', albumen print, 1867, from the album 'The Sculptured Ornament of the Monastery of Batalha in Portugal' published by the Arundel Society for Promoting the Knowledge of Art, London, 1868

Bibliographic References (Citation, Note/Abstract, NAL no)

Thompson, Charles Thurston. The Sculptured Ornament of the Monastery of Batalha in Portugal: Twenty Photographs by the late Charles Thurston Thompson with a Descriptive Account of the Building. Under the Sanction of the Science and Art Department, for the Use of Schools of Art and Amateurs. London: Arundel Society for Promoting the Knowldege of Art and Bell and Daldy, 1868.

Materials

Photographic paper

Techniques

Albumen process

Subjects depicted

Churches; Towers; Monasteries; Archways

Categories

Photographs; Topography; Tourism & Travel

Collection

Prints, Drawings & Paintings Collection

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