Exhibit Ideas

Romantic landscapes and places, real and represented: The Rhine, Switzerland/France/Germany; Mount Vesuvius, Italy; the Matterhorn, Switzerland; Chamonix, France; Caspar David Friedrich’s Der Wanderer über dem Nebelmeer, Kunsthalle Hamburg, Germany; Lac du Bourget, France; Mount Tambora, Indonesia; Goethe’s Hausgarten, Weimar, Germany.

Romantic residences: William Beckford’s Fonthill Abbey near Bath, UK; the Royal Pavilion, Brighton, UK; George Sand’s home at Nohant, France; Sir John Soane’s House Museum in London, UK; Lamartine’s birthplace in Milly-Lamartine, France; Foscolo’s prison cell in Rocco di Vignola, Italy.

Romantic bodies and belongings: De Quincey’s opium-burner, Dove Cottage; a lock of a Romantic figure’s hair (think of poets like Keats, Shelley or Victor Hugo), e.g. Keats-Shelley House, Rome; Shelley’s guitar, Bodleian Library, Oxford; Byron’s skull-cup, Newstead Abbey; Wordsworth’s skates, Rydal Mount; Napoleon’s penis, current whereabouts unknown; William Cowper’s counterpane, Cowper and Newton Museum, Olney; Berjon’s portrait of Hyacinthe-Ondine Valmore, Douai, Musée de la Chartreuse, France; Pushkin’s duelling pistols, Amboise, France; the Odiot silver service the comtesse d’Albany gave Canova, Museo Correr, Italy; Mariano Jose de Larra’s jacket, Museo del Romanticismo, Madrid; Marie Dorvals costume in Le monstre et le magicien, a melodrama by Merle, Béraud and Crosnier after Mary Shelley (engravings e.g. at the BNF, Paris, France).

Tools of inspiration/creation: Jane Austen’s desk, Chawton Cottage; Robert Burns’ desk, Burns’ Birthplace, Alloway; Beethoven’s viola, Beethoven Haus, Bonn, Germany; Schubert’s spectacles, Schubert Geburtshaus, Vienna, Austria; An issue of El Europeo published in Barcelona, Spain; Schiller’s desk, Schiller Museum, Weimar, Germany.

Memorials and monuments: the Scott monument in Edinburgh, UK; the weeping willow over Musset’s grave in the Père Lachaise, Paris; a medallion by David d’Angers, Galerie David d’Angers, Angers, France; the many statues of Pushkin, Goethe, Schiller, Beethoven, Schubert or Mickiewicz; the monument to Pauline de Montmorin, Saint-Louis des Français, Rome, Italy.

Unromantic undertones: canals, railways, closed stoves, factories, boxing, walking matches, Astley’s amphitheatre…