Brushing up on my English …
Day 50: Charing Cross in London – the closest station to the National Gallery on Trafalgar Square. So after a good night’s rest, I can dive into 2,300 paintings dating from the mid-13th century to 1900. My goal: two and a half Judith‘s – Liss, van der Neer, and a Rembrandt that might be Judith (underneath all that paint). But I shall also pass two important paintings by (insert trumpets here) Caravaggio. And Leonardo and Michelangelo and Raphael. No Donatello?
Sat-Thurs: 10am – 6pm; Fri: 10am – 9pm
Next stop is a gallery that is little known to most tourists. The Courtauld Gallery, billed as “one of the finest small museums in the world.” It is a 12 minute walk to Somerset House on the Strand to see Judith and the head of Holofernes by Titian – as well as numerous remarkable French Impressionists that formed the basis of the collection. delicious!
Daily: 10am – 6pm
If I am careful with my time, I might be able to sneak in a visit to the University College of London Art Museum to visit Judith showing the head of Holofernes by Colquhoun. But they are closed on the weekend for keggers(?!)
Mon-Fri: 1pm to 5pm; Sat-Sun: closed
Day 51: A 30 minute morning stroll towards the Thames brings me to the Tate Britain, which houses Alfred Steven‘s Judith next to British art from 16th century Tudors to the present day. I find the Pre-Raphaelite paintings particualrly enchanting – including The Lady of Shalott by John William Waterhouse, Ophelia by John Everett Millai and Beata Beatrix by Dante Gabriel Rossetti. Yes, I am a girly girl.
every day: 10 am – 6 pm
Then I need a taste of the Tate Modern. I can take the Tate boat that runs every 40 minutes for £5.50. If I plan the visit for a Friday or Saturday, I can stay late and soak up the ju-ju while I visit Picasso‘s Nude, Green Leaves and Bust. Is that like Eat Shoots and Leaves?
Sun-Thurs: 10am to 5pm; Fri-Sat: 10am to 10pm
Day 52: Taking the tube from Trafalgar to South Kensington Station gets me close to the Victoria and Albert Museum, I am looking for Judith Holding the Head of Holofernes by Matteo Ponzoni. Among 145 galleries with 4.5 million objects over 12.5 acres (making it the world’s largest museum of decorative arts and design), I am sure to find something else to satisfy my curiosity while I wander. For an entire day. Like Alfred Steven‘s model of Judith for St. Paul’s – or a Sheldon tapestry– or maiolica.
every day: 10 am to 5:45 pm; Fridays 10 am – 10 pm
Walking towards the hotel past Buckingham Palace brings me to Apsley House, home of the Duke of Wellington and a miniature Judith by Adam Alzheimer. As well as Canova’s larger than life statue of Napoleon as Mars the Peacemaker … naked. That is one way to humiliate your enemy for eternity.
Day 53: Probably take the tube from Trafalgar to Bond Street, hike up Duke Street to Hertford House on Manchester Square. the refurbished staterooms of this townhouse are home to the Wallace Collection, which has Beccafumi’s Judith with the Head of Holofernes among many other Italian Masters. And The Laughing Cavalier by Frans Hals. What’s so funny? Could it be the mustaches? Or maybe Holofernes fate? Nah, it’s Napolean’s bum.
every day: 10 am – 5 pm
Day 54: About an hour by train will put me in Windsor Castle. Although i will arrive at the Central station, a two-minute walk lands me at Windsor Castle which houses the Royal Collection, including the first Allori depiction of Judith. I am sure I could linger here for days between staterooms and armor and portraits and horses and guards and gift shops and Tudors. Maybe i could find another Veronese and that cameo of Judith.
(Mar-July) every day: 9:45 am – 5:15 pm;
(Aug-Oct) every day: 10 am – 6:15 pm;
(Nov-Feb) every day: 9:45 am – 4:15 pm
And there ends the search for Judith in English-speaking Europe. Next stop: the Continent.