STREETS | CRYSTAL
PALACE PARK |
| DULWICH GALLERY
MUSEUM | SYDENHAM
HILL WOOD | TRANSPORT
Dulwich Picture Gallery
When the Dulwich Picture Gallery opened its
doors in 1817 it was the first purpose-built
public art gallery in England. It offers a relaxed,
pleasing ambience and a perfect setting for
an impressive, rotating collection boasting
a number of works by European masters. The Gallery
hosts events for adults and for children, music,
films and children's classes, there is a café
and great gardens.
Its solid collection includes works by Pousssin,
Claude, Rubens, Murillo, Van Dyck, Rembrandt,
Watteau and Gainsborough, originally assembled
for the King of Poland in 1790 as an ‘instant’
national collection. When Poland was wiped off
the map in 1795 after a series of disastrous
wars, the King’s collection became available
and was eventually housed in Dulwich.
Designed by Sir John Soane and situated across
from Dulwich Park, the Gallery resembles an
unprepossessing civic building on the outside.
Once inside however, visitors are treated to
a lesson in architectural simplicity, and the
architect’s visionary design of a series of
interlinked rooms lit by natural light through
overhead skylights has been the primary influence
for art galleries ever since.