Sir James Thornhill

Invitation Card for the Feast of St Luke, with a Sketch of the Pediment of a Greek Temple

1718

View this artwork by appointment, at Tate Britain's Prints and Drawings Rooms

Medium
Graphite, chalk and ink on paper
Dimensions
Support: 187 x 305 mm
Collection
Tate
Acquisition
Purchased as part of the Oppé Collection with assistance from the National Lottery through the Heritage Lottery Fund 1996
Reference
T10437

Display caption

James Thornhill was an eminent figure in the London art world. In 1714 he replaced Kneller as the Governor of the Great Queen Street artists? academy. Shortly after he was made a member of the Virtuosi of St Luke, the most prestigious art club.

 

In 1718 Thornhill hosted the club?s annual feast at his house in the Piazza, Covent Garden. This ink sketch is a preliminary design for the invitation card. A jovial centaur points to a canvas showing St Luke, patron saint of artists, painting the Virgin and Child. St Paul?s church, Covent Garden, appears in the background.

 

Gallery label, September 2004