Surrounded by Art

A closer look at some of the extensive Royal Collection Trust artworks on display around Clarence House.

By Clarence House

Clarence House, St James's Palace: the garden front (1861/1861) by Joseph Nash Jnr (d.1922)Royal Collection Trust, UK

The Royal Collection at Clarence House

Although the official London residence of The Prince of Wales and The Duchess of Cornwall, Clarence House to a large extent maintains the arrangement of Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother, who lived here for 50 years. Many of the pieces on display form part of Her Majesty's collection, and are displayed according to her layout. The house boasts a wealth of fine paintings and tapestries, many of which you can explore here in high resolution.

To the left as you enter Clarence House via the Entrance Hall hangs this fine tapestry, The Formal Garden.

The formal garden by Lille Tapestry FactoryRoyal Collection Trust, UK

A plethora of garden elements compete for the viewer's attention in this feature-filled garden.

The Hercules fountain, the strangely two-dimensional scrolling box parterres, the two-tiered clipped topiary evergreens, and the wooded groves interspersed with palm trees, appear in other Flemish tapestries of this 'formal garden' type from the mid-seventeenth century onwards.

This example has been identified as a work from Lille, and the product of one of the offshoots of the Brussels tapestry manufactories that were established in the city in the late seventeenth century.

King George VI in garter robes, Simon Elwes (1902-75), From the collection of: Royal Collection Trust, UK
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Also in the hall hang portraits of King George VI and Queen Elizabeth The Queen Mother in Garter Robes, painted by Simon Elwes.

Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother in Garter Robes, Simon Elwes (1902-75), From the collection of: Royal Collection Trust, UK
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King George VI in garter robes by Simon Elwes (1902-75)Royal Collection Trust, UK

Queen Elizabeth the Queen Mother in Garter Robes by Simon Elwes (1902-75)Royal Collection Trust, UK

The famous John Piper paintings of Windsor Castle hang in each of the four corners of The Lancaster Room.

These watercolour views of Windsor were commissioned by George VI and Queen Elizabeth as a record of the Castle, in case of war damage.

"The series of images were part of a project called ‘Recording Britain’, and took Piper four years to complete," explains Kathryn Jones, Senior Curator of Decorative Arts at Royal Collection Trust.

"They are extremely evocative – often showing stormy skies or night-time views," she says.

Several more of Piper's Windsor Castle paintings can be seen in the Dining Room.

The roofs of the Royal Mews from Windsor Castle by John Piper (1903-92)Royal Collection Trust, UK

Windsor town, railway and the Curfew Tower and Horseshoe Cloister, Windsor Castle by John Piper (1903-92)Royal Collection Trust, UK

The Tea House at Frogmore, John Piper (1903-92), c.1941-4, From the collection of: Royal Collection Trust, UK
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Highlights in The Morning Room include:

A Conversation Piece at Aintree (left), an oil on canvas painting, c.1927-1930, showing King George V with his stud manager F.H.W. Featherstonhaugh.

When Homer Nods: Portrait of George Bernard Shaw (right), an oil on canvas, 1915, by Augustus John.

King George V and his Racing Manager: A Conversation Piece at Aintree by Walter Richard Sickert (1860-1942)Royal Collection Trust, UK

When Homer Nods: Portrait of George Bernard Shaw by Augustus John (1878-1961)Royal Collection Trust, UK

Above the Morning Room fireplace hangs A Lady in a Pink Ballgown, painted by Walter Richard Sickert in 1941.

Lady in a Pink Ballgown with Gentleman in Green by Walter Richard Sickert (1860-1942)Royal Collection Trust, UK

Also in the Morning Room hangs this oil on canvas portrait of a young Queen Elizabeth. Then Princess Elizabeth, Her Majesty was painted in 1933 by Philip de Laszlo.

To the right of Her Majesty's portrait is Claude Monet's painting, Study of rocks, the Creuse: 'Le Bloc'.

Queen Elizabeth II (b. 1926) when Princess Elizabeth of York by Philip Alexius de László (1869-1937)Royal Collection Trust, UK

Study of rocks, the Creuse: 'Le Bloc' by Oscar-Claude Monet (1840-1926)Royal Collection Trust, UK

On either side of the double doors from The Library to The Morning Room are these portraits by Savely Sorine.

To the left is HRH The Duchess of York, showing the late Queen Mother in 1923, when she was still Duchess of York.

To the right, a portrait of Her Majesty The Queen as HRH The Princess Elizabeth, Duchess of Edinburgh.

Portrait of HM Queen Elizabeth as The Duchess of York by Savely Sorine (1887-1953)Royal Collection Trust, UK

Portrait of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II as Her Royal Highness The Princess Elizabeth, Duchess of Edinburgh by Savely Sorine (1887-1953)Royal Collection Trust, UK

In The Dining Room, at the head of the table, is this oil on canvas of Hector, Nero and Dash with the Parrot, Lory, painted by Sir Edwin Landseer in 1838.

Painted for Queen Victoria, it shows her cavalier spaniel Dash, and her rare Scottish deerhound Hector, with the greyhound Nero, who may have belonged to The Duchess of Kent.

The Lory parrot was a gift from Queen Victoria's uncle, Duke Ernest I of Saxe-Coburg and Gotha.

On either side of this portrait are four more of John Piper's Windsor Castle paintings.

Hector, Nero, and Dash with the parrot, Lory (1838) by Sir Edwin Landseer (1803-73)Royal Collection Trust, UK

The Round Tower and the Upper Ward from the Quadrangle, Windsor Castle (RCIN 453352) by PiperRoyal Collection Trust, UK

The Quadrangle, Windsor Castle, looking west by John Piper (1903-92)Royal Collection Trust, UK

The Massacre of the Mamelukes by Gobelins Tapestry FactoryRoyal Collection Trust, UK

The Garden Room is dominated by this French tapestry, Mahommed Ali's Massacre of the Mamelukes at Cairo.

It was shown at The Great Exhibition of 1851, and subsequently presented to Queen Victoria by Emperor Napoleon III.

On either side of the door are pictures by Hungarian-born painter Jakob Bogdani, both entitled Birds in a Landscape.

They depict birds from the aviary at Windsor, which was established by Admiral George Churchill, brother of The Duke of Marlborough.

Both paintings were purchased by Queen Anne, from Churchill's executors, after his death in 1710.

Birds in a Landscape by Jakob Bogdani (c. 1660-1720)Royal Collection Trust, UK

Birds in a Landscape by Jakob Bogdani (c. 1660-1720)Royal Collection Trust, UK

Cotherstone, winner of the Derby, 1843, with W.Scott up in the colours of John Bowes Esq. of Stretham M.P for county Durham, who bred the horse, surrounded by portraits of Gibside Fairy, Whalebone, Whisker, Camel, Emma and Touchstone ++ by John Frederick Herring the Elder (1795-1865)Royal Collection Trust, UK

This piece - one of the most striking artworks found in The Horse Corridor - is 'Cotherstone', winner of the Derby, 1843, with W. Scott up in the colours of John Bowes Esq. by John Frederick Herring.

Cotherstone is surrounded by portraits of his grandam Gibside Fairy, his great-grandsire Whalebone, his grandsire Whisker, his grandsire Camel, his dam Emma, and his sire Touchstone.

Views of Clarence House: the large drawing-room (1861/1861) by James Roberts (c. 1800-67)Royal Collection Trust, UK

To find out more about the artworks on display at Clarence House, visit the Royal Collection Trust website.

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