Our Collection

The walls are bursting with a collection of artworks including pieces by Lucian Freud “Self Portrait: Reflection” (1996) and “A Plate of Prawns” (1958); Andy Warhol “Lobster” (1982), Georgio Morandi “Natura morta” (1946) and Keith Tyson “Still Life with White Carbs” (2011).

Keith Tyson Still Life with White Carbs artwork

Keith Tyson (b. 1969)

“Still life with white carbs”,  2011 

Oil on aluminium 

149 x 149 cm / 58 5/8 x 58 5/8 inches 

Keith Tyson is a Turner Prize winning British Artist who incorporates systems of logic, scientific methodology and chance into his work. Tyson continually challenges what constitutes reality using a wide variety of materials through a multitude of styles, displaying immense artistry and variation. ‘Still Life with White Carbs’ (2011) is inspired by the Dutch 16th Century still life tradition and plays on the idea of symbolism with a candid humour. In the original vanitas paintings, objects such as skulls or decaying fruit would symbolise the inevitability of death, while items from instruments to jewels would reflect what brought pleasure during life. In Tyson’s photorealist ‘Still Life with White Carbs’ where we might expect to see an abundance of fruits, flowers, or meat we are met with pies, breads, chips, and pastries. These often processed foods from around the world reflect on our modern global society, our consumerism, our reliance on fast food, our health and our wealth, or lack thereof. 

Suzanne Valadon (1865–1938) 

“Nu Allongé sur un canapé (Reclining nude on a divan)”,  1916 

Oil on canvas 

65.3 x 92.3 cm / 25 3/4 x 36 3/8 inches 

Growing up in Montmartre, the bohemian quarter of Paris, Suzanne Valadon turned to waitressing, nannying and was even a circus performer to support herself – though a fall from a trapeze led her to model for artists including Pierre-Auguste Renoir and Henri de Toulouse-Lautrec. Valadon learned swiftly from the painters around her, becoming an artist in her own right and the first self-taught woman to exhibit at the Salon de la Société Nationale des Beaux-Arts. Valadon would often paint friends and family and ‘Nu allonge sur en canape’ (1916) likely depicts Gaby, who worked as the artist’s housekeeper. The unapologetic nude, reclining in a pose reminiscent of Titian’s Venus of Urbino, takes on a portrait-like quality. This is seen in the realistic depiction of an imperfect figure, the sensitivity to flesh and self-awareness, which coupled with Valdon’s radiant palette and precise black outlines offers an enchanting truth. 

Frank Auerbach

Frank Auerbach (b. 1931) 

“Primrose Hill”, Summer 1968 

Oil on board 

122 x 122 cm / 48 x 48 inches 

Frank Auerbach moved to Mornington Crescent in 1952 and has rarely left the area since, apart from his almost weekly visits to the National Gallery. The park at Primrose Hill, near Auerbach’s studio, is one of the artist’s favourite motifs and one he returns to time and time again, loyally painting it through the seasons and weathers. As Auerbach explained ‘This part of London is my world. I’ve been wandering around these streets for so long that I have become attached to them, and as fond of them as people are of their pets.’ Primrose Hill, Summer (1968) is a dynamic composition sculpted from sumptuous, gestural impasto using successive sweeps of the brush and scrapes of the palette knife, to work and rework the surface. The painting displays a bright summer’s day, with a buttery yellow carpet of primrose flowers sweeping across the grass, above which bold crimson and verdant green zig zags express the swaying trees on Primrose Hill. 

A painting of a plate of shrimps

Lucian Freud (1922 - 2011) 

“A plate of prawns”,  1958 

Oil on canvas 

22.2 x 26.9 cm / 8 3/4 x 10 5/8 inches 

Lucian Freud’s ‘A Plate of Prawns’ (1958) once graced the walls of Barney ‘BJ’ Eastwood, an infamous boxing promoter and manager of six world champion boxers, who Freud was acquainted with through his love of gambling and the thrill of big wins and heavy losses. Painted on a visit to Freud’s friend Lady Jane Willoughby at her estate in the Scottish Highlands, ‘A Plate of Prawns’ brings the same directness seen in Freud’s portraiture to this still life. The heaped prawns, encircled by the grey shadow of the plate and yellow tablecloth are painted with an uncompromising exactitude. Each prawn is savoured as an individual, visceral shades of coral, ivory and scarlet glint through the translucent shells much like the subtle fleshy application of paint we are so accustomed to seeing in Freud’s masterful figurative paintings. 

Lucian Freud (1922 - 2011)

“Self Portrait: Reflection”, 1996



88 x 70.4 cm / 34 5/8 x 27 3/4 inches

Lucian Freud was born in Berlin, the grandson of the famous psychoanalyst Sigmund Freud, but grew up in England after his family fled from Nazi Germany to Britain in the 1930’s. Freud is best known for his intensely observed portraits and self-portraits. He would paint characters from all walks of life – including fellow artists, the criminal underworld, the aristocracy and drag queens. ‘Self Portrait: Reflection’ (1996) was his first formal self-portrait print to be published, at the age of 74. The tonal effects of bright light and deep shadow here replicate the layers of paint and visible brushstrokes seen in his canvases to express flesh. While the frontal self-portrait and top lighting should have given rise to a balanced image, Freud’s portrayal is an unflinching representation of his ageing face and the many asymmetries he documented in himself.

Henri Matisse (1869 - 1954) 

“Éperlans” (Smelts), 1920 (Executed in Étretat) 

Oil on canvas 

38 x 45.5 cm / 15 x 17 7/8 inches 

Henri Matisse’s remarkable and varied career spanned over six decades and within that time he became one of the most influential artists of the twentieth century. His stylistic innovations, alongside his contemporaries, would alter the course of art and inspire generations. In 1920 Matisse, with his family, spent the summer on the Côte d’Albâtre in Étretat. Étretat was a popular seaside resort and fishing village, whose majestic chalk cliffs and beaches were painted by Eugène Isabey as well as Gustave Courbet and Monet. It was here that Matisse painted the fluid ‘Éperlans’ (1920), an almost surprisingly realist painting, but one that offers daring combinations of patterns and colour. The fish curl across the plate in graceful arabesques, while the cerulean blue contrasts with the vermillion red, which is reflected in the deep umber plate. Within this intimate canvas, playing with the still-life tradition, Matisse achieves a jovial virtuosity of colour and dynamism.

Frank Bowling (B. 1934) 

“Jack”,  2021 

Acrylic, acrylic gel, pain relief patches and glitter on canvas with marouflage
148 x 188.5 x 4 cm / 58 1/4 x 74 1/4 x 1 5/8 inches 

Born in Guyana in 1934, Frank Bowling moved to London aged 19 and studied at the Royal College of Art, graduating with the silver medal for painting in 1962. Following his graduation,  Bowling traversed the Atlantic between studios in London and New York, developing a visionary approach that fuses abstraction with personal memories. For Bowling, painting is primarily about colour and materials, the application of paint, how it can be physically moved or manipulated, how mediums interact, and the random process of creation – whether it be staining, pouring, spraying, stitching, or cropping. ‘Jack’ (2021) is a canvas that displays Bowling’s constant reinvention of the painted plane, thick layers of warm, saturated impasto surge across the surface with glitter and pain relief patches embedded to create a mesmerising composition. The title of the work ‘Jack’ pays tribute to Jack O’Connell, the landlord of the King’s Arms, Fulham Road, Bowling’s dear friend since the 1950s. 

Subodh Gupta (b. 1964)

“Wash before eating”, 2018

Oil paint on bronze, ceramic fountain, brass tap


60 x 45 x 22 cm / 23 5/8 x 17 3/4 x 8 5/8 inches

Indian artist Subodh Gupta has often woven in food and its accoutrements into his practice – from using tiffin carriers or stainless-steel utensils as a medium; casting potatoes and mangos in bronze; photographing unfinished plates of food from New Delhi to New York, before translating them into photorealist paintings; to curating dinner happenings. Despite the differing methods they are all an exploration that reflects on everyday cultural practices. Gupta’s ‘Tiffin’ and ‘7pm’, both painted in 2013, take a table down view, translating the meals atop stainless steel dishware on display, alongside the domestic rituals associated with them, into symbolic and elegant still lifes. In doing so, Gupta re-establishes the link between traditional artworks of the Western cannon and the wider world of food, which has always been at the centre of the artist’s creative practice and personal biography. He thus explores the effects of cultural translation and dislocation, demonstrating art’s ability to transcend cultural and economic boundaries.

Giorgio De Chirico (1888 - 1978) 

“La Muse”,  1974 

Oil on paper laid on panel
25.4 x 18.3 cm / 10 x 7 1/4 inches

Location: The Italian Room

Italian artist Giorgio de Chirico, turned to the philosophies of Friedrich Nietzsche and Arthur Schopenhauer to inform his disquieting and dreamlike paintings. ‘La Muse’ (1974) features one of de Chirico’s iconic half mannequin, half Doric column figures in a near empty landscape, with extended shadows and flattened planes in an enigmatic and perplexing scene. The ‘muse’ swathed in classical drapery, was a recurring image in de Chirico’s work and represents the daughters of Zeus and Mnemosyne who were the inspirational goddesses of literature, science and art. Within de Chirico’s Metaphysical composition he offers us no clear narrative – we are set adrift in a part classical, part theatrical landscape of hidden meanings and mysterious signs offering us only uncanny, unanswered questions.

Giorgio Morandi (1890 - 1964) 

“Natura Morta”,  1946 

Oil on canvas
35.5 x 47.5 cm / 14 x 18 3/4 inches 

Location: The Italian Room

Giorgio Morandi was well read and engaged infusing his work with historic references although he cultivated an image of himself as a reclusive, monk-like figure. Morandi rarely left his native Bologna, living and working in a small house shared with his sisters, which has variously been described as dusty, silent, solitary – an impression reinforced by the ostensible simplicity of his imagery. The contemplative ‘Natura morta’ (1946), found in the Italian Rooms, groups together receptacles with a timeless and poetic sensibility and forms part of the artist’s lifelong investigation into the potential of the still-life genre. Here, the posed group of four vessels clustered together on a plain tabletop, overlap and undulate like an arranged family portrait. However, within the careful perspective and muted palette, Morandi imparts a kind of alchemy, endowing these items with a unique spiritual aura.

Wooden dining table with chairs, with a painting at the back

(Giorgio) Domenico Dupra (1689 - 1770) 

“Prince Charles Edward Stewart (‘The Young Pretender’ (1720-1788)”,  1740 

Oil on canvas in 18th century (probably original) 

French frame 

82 x 66 cm / 32 1/4 x 26 inches 

Location: The Scottish Room

Sitting proudly in the Scottish Rooms is an important portrait of Charles Edward Stuart, also known as ‘the Young Pretender’ or ‘Bonnie Prince Charlie’. Painted by celebrated Italian court artist Domenico Dupra in 1740, the charismatic portrait may have been commissioned by his father James to disseminate the image of the young figurehead and inspire his Jacobite followers. ‘Bonnie Prince Charles’ conspicuously displays the Order of the Thistle woven in gold onto his sleeve, a Garter sash, and an elaborate St. Andrew badge. Standing defiantly, hand on hip, the Prince is set against a landscape, no doubt as a reminder of the lands for which he was fighting. It is thought this image was copied by numerous engravers and widely circulated to build support for a restored Stuart monarchy.

Ferdinand Hodler (1853 - 1918)

“Blick ins Unendliche”, 1914
, revised 1916 

86.5 x 63 cm / 34 x 24 3/4 inches

Location: The Swiss Room

The Swiss Room at Mount St. Rooms features several paintings by Ferdinand Hodler, a revered native artist and a key figure of modernism. Coming from humble beginnings Hodler trained in decorative painting, selling naturalistic alpine views to tourists, before studying at the École des Beaux-Arts in Geneva and leading a successful international career. Landscapes, nonetheless, remained a constant in his practice and ‘Der Mönch mit Wolken’ (1911) and ‘Thunersee mit Niesen’ (1910) display not only the majestic Swiss scenery in his sinuous line and radiant colour but what he termed ‘parallelism’. Hodler believed the unity of nature could be expressed through composition, symmetry, and repetition or ‘parallelism’. His exquisite paintings balance the light, water, and mountains around a central point – magnifying, simplifying, and liberating them from the constraints of detail to provide a meditative unity.