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Queen Victoria

  • Object:

    Tapestry

  • Place of origin:

    Windsor (made)

  • Date:

    1877 (made)

  • Artist/Maker:

    Levin, Phoebus (artist)
    Angeli, Heinrich Anton von, born 1840 - died 1925 (artist)
    Royal Windsor Tapestry Manufactory (weaver)

  • Materials and Techniques:

    Tapestry woven in silk and wool

  • Museum number:

    T.94-1968

  • Gallery location:

    In Storage

This portrait of Queen Victoria is possibly the first tapestry woven at the Royal Windsor Tapestry Company. It is taken from a painting by the Austrian artist Baron Heinrich von Angeli (1840-1925) completed at Windsor Castle in 1875.

This is a very suitable subject for the Royal Windsor Tapestry Company which was closely connected with the Royal family. Queen Victoria was Patron and her children were appointed Presidents and Vice Presidents. She made several visits there and recorded her favourable impressions in her diaries. In 1880 she consented to the manufactory being termed 'Royal'. The tapestry cartoon was drawn in 1876 by Phoebus Levin, a German painter working in London between 1855 and 1878. The tapestry bears the names of Michel Brignolas, who became the first Manager, and of Henri C. M. Henry, Art Director of Gillows, the Oxford Street decorators who founded the Royal Windsor Tapestry Company.

The Royal Windsor Tapestry company emulated the work of contemporary French establishments. It adopted the 'basse lisse' (low warp) technique favoured at the fashionable Beauvais factories. The tapestry was exhibited at the Paris International Exhibition of 1878. Here it was purchased by Sir Albert Sasoon for his home at 25 Kensington Gore, London.

Physical description

Tapestry woven in silk and wool of Queen Victoria. The Queen is portrayed full face with her shoulders slightly turned. Her left hand clasps her right, which holds a scroll. She wears a black silk dress trimmed with ermine and lace, the ribbon and Order of the Garter, a pearl necklace, bracelet, brooch and rings, a lace headdress and a small crown. The portrait is bust length, set against a ground in varying shades of brown with, at the upper right, part of the Royal Arms surrounded by the Garter. This is cut by the curved rim of the round frame.

Place of Origin

Windsor (made)

Date

1877 (made)

Artist/maker

Levin, Phoebus (artist)
Angeli, Heinrich Anton von, born 1840 - died 1925 (artist)
Royal Windsor Tapestry Manufactory (weaver)

Materials and Techniques

Tapestry woven in silk and wool

Marks and inscriptions

'P. Levin / nach 1877 / Angely'
Inscribed on the left of the Queen

'Windsor. / H. Henry. M. Brignolas'
Inscribed on the right of the Queen

Dimensions

Height: 92.7 cm, Width: 87.6 cm, Height: 36.5 in approx., Width: 34.5 in approx.

Object history note

Commissioned by Gillow & Co., London, drawn by Phoebus Levin (born in Germany, worked in London 1855 to 1878) after a painting by Heinrich von Angeli (born in Odenburg, now Sopron, Hungary, 1840, died in Vienna, 1925); woven at the Royal Windsor Tapestry Manufactory, Windsor, Berkshire

Descriptive line

Tapestry portrait of Queen Victoria woven in silk and wool, copied by Phoebus Levin, after Heinrich Anton von Angeli, woven in Royal Windsor Tapestry Manufactory, Windsor, 1877

Labels and date

British Galleries:
This tapestry was awarded a gold medal at the Paris International Exhibition of 1878 and was possibly the first piece woven at the Royal Windsor Tapestry Manufactory. Queen Victoria wrote favourably of her visits to these workshops in her diaries. Her image in the tapestry is based on a painting by Heinrich von Angeli, the Queen's favourite portrait painter at the time. [27/03/2003]

Categories

Textiles; Tapestry; Royalty

Collection

Textiles and Fashion Collection

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