John Lessore

Allegorical Box

1976

Medium
Wood, oil paint and glass
Dimensions
Displayed: 360 x 760 x 180 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Presented by the artist 1994
Reference
T06862

Display caption

This is the second of two decorated boxes which Wilkie commissioned from Lessore. Wilkie specified the scheme of decoration which again demonstrates his fascination with Titian. On the lid is a copy of Titian's 'Sacred and Profane Love' in the Borghese Gallery in Rome. The base of the interior bears a copy of 'The Three Ages of Man', on loan from the Duke of Westmoreland's collection to the National Gallery of Scotland. The front is decorated with a version of 'An Allegory of Prudence' in the National Gallery, London. The box incorporates a removable interior which is shown alongside. This has a mirror which enables the painting on its base to be seen the right way round.

Gallery label, September 2004