Wallace Collection London is a small cosy museum located in Manchester Square in the city of London. It offers via free-admission, a collection of paintings, sculpture, furniture, arms and armour stored in the former townhouse of the Seymour family. Let’s pay them a visit and see what’s on in the galleries today.
Curation of fine and decorative arts
In a nutshell, the Wallace Collection London features a curation of fine and decorative arts established 1897, 124 years ago. Also, these pieces on display are dated from the 15th to the 19th centuries. Moreover, the Hertford House where the museum is located is named after Sir Richard Wallace, the Marquesses of Hertford. Also, this Hertford House was a 16th and 17th-century townhouse of Edward Seymour, 1st Earl of Hertford (1539–1621).
Additionally, here, an elaborate grand staircase lined with a red carpet greets you at the entrance of the museum. This lobby is also adorned with several busts, paintings and nicely polished hand rails, tad like a posh home mansion.
Galleries fit for a king
Furthermore, these galleries are built into the many rooms of the estate which follows through in a loop around the grand staircase as a focal point. It is fairly easy to navigate. Here you can explore and marvel at the various well-decorated rooms fit for a royalty, or a noble person for that matter.
The rooms are decorated with painted head to toe with chandeliers and marble fireplaces to name a few. There is a Large Drawing Room, living quarters and the Great Gallery, a large skylight lit glass atrium home to an open dining café and events seating area.
Wallace Collection Weapons and paintings
In addition, interesting interior collections includes one of weapons of war. You can find cabinets full of firearms comprising of swords, pistols and muskets. Interesting ones includes some flint ignited one with rather intricate ivory-type cravings made into the guns themselves.
Also, there is a notable collection of Calvary armour, for both rider and horse. You can find set of armour stored behind glass too together with collections of porcelain.
Moreover, the Wallace Collection has an important holdings of French 18th-century paintings and furniture. You can find these Old Master paintings arranged into 25 galleries throughout the estate.
Some of these galleries are rather extensive and large. Though the collection is nowhere near those offered by the National Gallery but is one of the most cozy with decorative antique furniture throughout the galleries.
Also, notably, these pieces date as far back as 1897. They were from Richard Seymour-Conway own private collection. He was the 4th Marquess of Hertford from 1800–1870. The collection opened to permanent public viewing from 1900 in Hertford.
All in all, if you like armour, weapons, swords with a mix of 18th century paintings, the Wallace collection is one to put on your shortlist. You are good at the Wallace Collection London for about 2 hours or so. It is not a big gallery, but one of the cosiest and less crowded minor museums you can visit in London if you have a spare day out.