Hogarth’s House has been invited to join the Artist’s Studio Museum Network, and we are delighted Hogarth’s studio now has a page on their website in such august company.
This has come at a very special time for Hogarth’s House. The Trust is a partner in the Mulberry Garden Project there, along with the Hogarth’s House Trust/Hounslow Council. A Stage 1 grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund is supporting the development of a scheme to restore the Listed 17th century wall, create a new “exhibition garden” which tells the whole story of the half acre plot and provide an appropriate setting for the House, as well as building a learning centre in the garden.
The grant includes funding for initial archaeological investigations and these were undertaken by AOC Archaeology Group in April with the help of local volunteers. Work on comparing a series of old maps with great accuracy, undertaken by Sarah Couch who is designing the new garden, was very important in pin-pointing where we wished them to locate the trial trenches. The very exciting news is that the footings of the building in which Hogarth worked when he was in Chiswick were found, close to today’s double gates at the west end of the garden. The bricks are very similar to those from which the House was built so it ay have dated from the first occupant, in about 1717. At the level of the lane was accommodation for Hogarth’s horse and the “paintin room” – as one of Mrs Hogarth’s relatives later described it – was above. A conjectural sketch of the studio, published in 1853 in “Pilgrimages to English Shrines” by Mrs S C Hall, 1853 and Alfred Dawson, who refurbished the House in the early 1890s, drew the exterior with the neighbour’s conservatory beyond.
The plan will be to show where the studio stood in the new garden designs
To raise funds for The Mulberry Garden project at Hogarth’s House the Trust is offering replicas of the fabulous lead urns given by celebrity actor David Garrick to William Hogarth for sale at £895, made to order. All profits go to support the Trust’s work. The Trust is very grateful to Pot Pourri, the florists in Chiswick High Road, where two urns formed the centrepiece of a lavish Valentine’s window display. Decorated with finely modelled swags of flowers and lions’ heads, the urns are topped by pine cones. The flowers symbolise the fertility and pleasure of a garden, the pine cones are a classical symbol of eternal life.
The love story between David Garrick and his beautiful dancer wife, Eva Maria Veigel, a talented Austrian dancer whose stage name was “La Violette”. Lady Burlington is said to have introduce the dancer to Garrick and Lord Burlington gave her a huge £6,000 dowry, leading to speculation that she might be his love child. She was also a star and played hard to get, refusing to perform with Garrick at his Drury Lane Theatre. Their celebrity wedding in 1749 would have featured in Hello magazine had it existed then!
The Trust commissioned the restoration/conservation of the urns in 2013. An exceptionally high quality mould was made and replicas created to place on the gate piers at Hogarth’s House since the originals are too fragile and valuable to put back there. An skilled sculpture conservator has cast the replicas in Jesmonite, a modern, durable, flame-resistant compound, with a very high quality finish. They are lighter in weight than the lead urns (which are filled with mortar) but astonishingly close in appearance and finish to the originals. The colour is integral to the material and will not wear off.
The urns were included in the April 2016 issue of Gardens Illustrated magazine