100 Great British Drawings Now On View at The Huntington

It’s no secret I’m an Anglophile. The Repair Shop, Paddington, Cath Kidston, Sherlock Holmes and Jane Austen…I love it all. But when it comes to British art I do have a blindspot. Sure I know Gainsborough’s Blue Boy, Whistler’s Mother and Morris prints but anything beyond that is kind of iffy. Luckily for me, the Huntington recently opened the exhibit 100 Great British Drawings and I headed there for a little bit of education.

100 Great British Drawings

When it comes to British art, the Huntington has a collection like no other. Their drawing collection alone has over 12,000 pieces including works by such notable artists as William Blake, John Constable and J.M.W Turner and these artists and more are included in 100 Great British Drawings.

100 Great British Drawings

Featuring works from the 17th through 20th centuries the exhibit presents a wide variety of styles and subject matter from the scientific to the biblical and from landscape to portraiture.

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I must admit that prior to visiting the exhibition I was little interested in drawings. I’ve long been more interested in painting, sculpture and photography and most museum visits would find me skimming past them. After viewing the 100 pieces on display I’ve realized my error in neglecting them for so long. They are absolutely beautiful works of art that showcase the incredible skills of their creators.

100 British Drawings

And they can be so colorful. For some reason I often considered drawings as “first drafts” of future, more detailed works. Not at all. Drawings are fully formed works of art that are vibrant and full of life and am grateful to have finally realized that.

100 British Drawings

100 Great British Drawings is an excellent introduction to the Huntington’s vast collection of masterworks. On view through September 5, 2022 it’s a great addition to a day at the library and gardens. Come early, stroll through the beautiful foliage and as soon as the sun comes out head into the cool gallery to peruse the fascinating collection. It makes for a perfect summer day.

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