Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Arab Hall - Leighton House


Hels said...

I have seen Arab Hall at Leighton House and agree it was indeed a very scholarly display of collecting and architecture. And as a museum today, it works beautifully.

My question about house museums (think Frick etc) is how did people live in the home as normal families while preserving the museum-type conditions for posterity. Frederic, Lord Leighton didn't have young children playing soccer in the lounge room, but did he use Arab Hall at all or was it just for display?

Hermes said...

You're rigt this was more a museum than a living space. I quote from the guide:

"The centrepiece of the late 1870s extension to the house, the Arab Hall was conceived as a means to display the extraordinary collection of ceramic tiles amassed by Leighton through the 1860s and 70s. Based on a banqueting room at the Moorish palace of La Zisa in Palermo, Sicily, the interior is a unique combination of late nineteenth century craftsmanship with the most important collection of 16th and 17th century Damascus tiles in Britain."

My living spaces are not quite like that - especially with two grand-children!