Thursday, April 11, 2013

Painting of the Day: The Blue Velvet Closet at Carlton House, 1818

Carlton House:
The Blue Velvet Closet
Charles Wilde, 1818
Commissioned by King George IV
The Royal Collection
As we’ve learned previously, King George IV made redecorating Carlton House one of his favorite pet projects. He fretted over the designs of the house, making sure that his residence was properly befitting his station. We know that George IV had a penchant for French design. So, it’s no surprise that many of the motifs in the décor incorporated gilt fleur de lis.

Such is the case with “The Blue Velvet Closet.” Prior to 1818, this room actually was a small dressing room which adjoined an opulent bedchamber. George IV had the wall between the two rooms removed, moved the chimney piece to the farthest end of the room and created a large space to house his collection of Dutch art. As a backdrop for his cherished collection, he chose rich blue velvet adorned with a gold pattern of fleur de lis.

As was often the case with the Royal Family whenever a redecoration project was completed, they had the room recorded by painters who could ensure that the hard work of overhauling private suites would always be recognized. In this instance, Charles Wild was recruited for the job and did an excellent job showing the beauty of one of King George IV’s favorite rooms. 

Crown Copyright
The Royal Collection
Image Courtesy of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II

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