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The Royal Cornwall Polytechnic Society

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Talks // Coming up // Fakes & Fortunes (Or Have I Discovered a Constable in my Attic?)
25 July

Fakes & Fortunes (Or Have I Discovered a Constable in my Attic?)

Sarah Cove ACR is an Accredited paintings conservator, technical art historian and lecturer based in Falmouth, Cornwall. As an expert in her field, she is regularly contacted by people worldwide that think they have a found a previously unknown Constable!! Some have, some have not, as you will see in this lecture which gives a ‘behind the scenes’ look at how such decisions are made and will describe some extraordinary successes but also crashing disappointments. Stories will include a hugely publicised oil sketch seen on Breakfast TV, reputedly worth £250,000, and the chance discovery of a fabulous, almost abstract, rare oil study of the 1830s that had formerly belonged to an American G.I.

Sarah founded the Constable Research Project in conjunction with the V&A Museum in 1986 to study John Constable RA’s materials and techniques from the technical and scientific point of view. Since then she has examined over 250 works from collections worldwide, from tiny oil sketches on fragments of canvas, paper supports and boards to the ‘six-footers’, some of Constable’s most famous and iconic paintings including The Haywain (1821), The Leaping Horse (1825) and Salisbury Cathedral from the Meadows (1831). She has developed a technical chronology that assists with the dating of his known works, relatively few of which were signed and dated by the artist. This is useful for the attribution (or not) of newly discovered pictures.

She has published widely on Constable’s material and techniques including catalogue essays for Tate’s ‘Constable’ (1991) and ‘Constable: The Great Landscapes’ (2006) exhibitions. She has appeared in BBC1’s live broadcast of ‘The People’s Haywain’ (2002), ‘Constable in Love’ with Andrew Graham-Dixon (2004) and BBC One’s ‘Fake or Fortune?’ in 2014 and 2017.

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Sarah Cove ACR, Constable Research Project

Fakes & Fortunes (Or Have I Discovered a Constable in my Attic?)
Thursday 25th July 6pm

Tickets: £8/£5

A £1 Poly Fund payment is added to each ticket sold

Check times : Book now


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