Feliks Topolski was the great chronicler of British pageantry in the last
century. Originally sent to London in 1935 to record the state funeral
of King GeorgeV he immediately fell for the ‘exoticism’ of the city and
the pomp and ceremony of state occasions that the British have developed
into a fine art. In 1958, by then a naturalised citizen, he was commissioned
by HRH The Duke of Edinburgh to produce a large scale
mural commemorating HM The Queen’s coronation day, in a long
corridor at Buckingham Palace. Topolski’s style of narrative painting
was well-suited to the subject matter and the mural was based on his
own personal impression of the Coronation, which he had watched
in the streets outside the Abbey having attended the final rehearsal.
The Duke seemed pleased with the results, writing ‘It is a fascinating
contemporary record by a master of visual commentary of a great state
occasion presented in his own highly individual idiom’.
Topolski had been commissioned byVogue magazine to produce work
for its 1947 Royal Wedding issue and during the 1977 Silver Jubilee
celebrations, Selfridges in Oxford Street invited him to decorate their
windows to commemorate the event.
In 1981 it was no surprise then to find Topolski, sketch book in hand,
at the forefront of the ceremony and celebrations surrounding the
marriage of HRH Prince Charles and Lady Diana Spencer. This collection
of original sketches form a wonderful historical record executed
on the spot with Topolski’s distinctive immediacy and passion.
22 March - 8 April 2016
Panter & Hall
11-12 Pall Mall
Monday to Friday
10.00 AM - 6.00 PM
BY APPOINTMENT ONLY
CLOSED BANK HOLIDAYS