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National Gallery (London, England)

Updated on February 8, 2015
Daisy Mariposa profile image

Daisy Mariposa has a B.A. in Fine Arts from Montclair State University and certification to teach all art subjects in K-12.

"The Felt Hat" (1622-1625) by Peter Paul Rubens is in the public domain in the United States and those countries with a copyright term of life of the author plus 100 years or less.
"The Felt Hat" (1622-1625) by Peter Paul Rubens is in the public domain in the United States and those countries with a copyright term of life of the author plus 100 years or less. | Source

Founding of the National Gallery in London

The National Gallery was created on April 2, 1824. There were rumors that the 38 paintings owned by John Julius Angerstein, a wealthy merchant and art collector who died in 1823, were to be sold to someone outside England. King George IV advised that England purchase the collection. At the instigation of the Prime Minister, Lord Liverpool, Parliament voted £60,000 for the purchase, preservation, and exhibition of the paintings owned by Angerstein.

The National Gallery, housed in Angerstein’s London house, opened for the first time on May 10, 1824. There was little initial interest in the Gallery. Few people could have foreseen that within 20 years of its founding, the National Gallery would be home to two of the most famous paintings in the world, Jan van Eyck’s The Marriage of Giovanni Arnolfini and Giovanna Cenami and Giovanni Bellini’s Portrait of the Doge Leonardo Loredan.

The National Gallery's Art Collection

English art has never been the dominant interest of English collectors. The Angerstein collection included paintings by Rembrandt Harmenszoon van Rijn—a Dutch painter and etcher, Peter Paul Rubens—a Flemish painter, Anthony van Dyck—a Flemish painter, and Claude Lorrain (also known just as Claude and as Claude Gellée)—a French-born painter who was active in Italy. English taste has frequently preferred Italian Renaissance paintings and paintings of seventeenth-century France to those paintings executed by English artists.

What I especially like about the National Gallery is that the collection is small—only 2000 paintings, and that it is an acquired collection. Unlike the paintings in the British Museum, many of which belonged to the monarchs in England, the paintings in the National Gallery have either been purchased by the Gallery or inherited from private collectors.

The National Gallery is a gallery of art, not just a repository of paintings and objects of historical significance owned by England’s monarchs. It is much more "personal" than a museum.

I'm showcasing three paintings from the gallery's collection in this article. I hope you enjoy viewing the paintings and reading about them.

National Gallery, London

A marker -
National Gallery, City of Westminster, London WC2N, UK
get directions

"The Marriage of Giovanni Arnolfini and Giovanna Cenami" (1434) by Jan van Eyck  is in the public domain in the United States, and those countries with a copyright term of life of the author plus 100 years or less.
"The Marriage of Giovanni Arnolfini and Giovanna Cenami" (1434) by Jan van Eyck is in the public domain in the United States, and those countries with a copyright term of life of the author plus 100 years or less. | Source

Jan van Eyck's The Marriage of Giovanni Arnolfini and Giovanna Cenami

Jan van Eyck painted The Marriage of Giovanni Arnolfini and Giovanna Cenami in 1434. The painting is thought to depict a wedding ceremony.

If you look very carefully at the reflection in the mirror on the far wall, you'll see the images of two people. They're standing where you would expect witnesses to the ceremony to stand.

The painting contains several religious symbols—a rosary hanging on the far wall, the rondels on the frame of the mirror, and the posts on the chair. The candle in the chandelier is thought to be a nuptial symbol. Some scholars think the little dog represents Fidelity.

The Latin inscription on the wall above the mirror—Jan van Eyck was here, 1434—almost seems like an early form of graffiti.

Giovanni Bellini's Portrait of the Doge Leonardo Loredan

Giovanni Bellini (1430 to 1516) was an Italian Renaissance painter who lived his entire life in Venice, Italy. He painted this portrait in 1501 to 1502 of the Doge Leonardo Loredan. The Doge was a magistrate elected to office at the age of 65. He guided the Venetian Republic from 1501 to 1521.

Giovanni Bellini painted this portrait of the Doge Leonardo Loredan in 1501 to 1502.
Giovanni Bellini painted this portrait of the Doge Leonardo Loredan in 1501 to 1502. | Source

The Painter’s Father (1497) by Albrecht Dürer

Albrecht Dürer painted this portrait of his father, Albrecht Dürer, the Elder, a goldsmith, in 1497. It is one of four such similar paintings that the artist did. Although German by birth, Dürer's paintings show more of a Flemish or Italian influence.

Albrecht Dürer's The Painter's Father
Albrecht Dürer's The Painter's Father | Source

Have you ever visited the National Gallery in London, England?

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    • snakeslane profile image

      snakeslane 4 years ago from Canada

      This is awesome Daisy, really enjoyed...laughing out loud, LOL at this one, so cleverly done. Regards, snakeslane

    • Daisy Mariposa profile image
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      Daisy Mariposa 4 years ago from Orange County (Southern California)

      snakeslane,

      It's nice to "see" you again. Thank you for being the first person to comment in my 75th Hub, my 7th painting parody Hub. I'm glad you enjoyed it.

    • Happyboomernurse profile image

      Gail Sobotkin 4 years ago from South Carolina

      These parodies are awesome, especially the one of Simone which looked so real, I had to do a triple take before I realized it was a parody.

      Well done! Voted up, awesome, beautiful and interesting.

    • snakeslane profile image

      snakeslane 4 years ago from Canada

      Congratulations on the 75th Hub Daisy! Came back to vote up and across. Shall return for a laugh.

    • Daisy Mariposa profile image
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      Daisy Mariposa 4 years ago from Orange County (Southern California)

      snakeslane,

      Thanks for visiting again. Have you read / viewed the parodies in my other six painting parody Hubs? If you haven't, you might want to start with *What is a Parody?* That Hub, in addition to featuring some parodies I created, contains a parody my friend Mohan Kumar (Docmo) did of me.

    • snakeslane profile image

      snakeslane 4 years ago from Canada

      Hi Daisy, I did see that one, it is great, but must check out the others. I love the fascinating art history you've put together, so well researched, and your gorgeous presentation of the original paintings.

    • Jools99 profile image

      Jools99 4 years ago from North-East UK

      Daisy, another great parody - Steve looks great as Arnolfini - the sunglasses look great :o)

      I have been to the National Gallery a few times on visits to the capital. I will never look at these paintings again without thinking of these hub models.

    • Daisy Mariposa profile image
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      Daisy Mariposa 4 years ago from Orange County (Southern California)

      snakeslane,

      Thanks for visiting again. My degree is in Fine Arts, plus I'm certified to teach all art subjects in Kindergarten through the 12th grade. When I was in school, what interested me the most was art history.

    • Daisy Mariposa profile image
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      Daisy Mariposa 4 years ago from Orange County (Southern California)

      Julie (Jools99),

      Thanks for reading and commenting in another of my Hubs. I appreciate your continued support.

      I could have used a photo of Steve without his sunglasses, but I think Steve's wearing the glasses adds a lot to the parody. Steve frequently calls me *cheeky*... What do you think he's going to say after he sees the parody?

    • poshcoffeeco profile image

      Steve Mitchell 4 years ago from Cambridgeshire

      Daisy, I tell you what he is going to say.................................FANTASTIC!

      This is your best one yet. Omly hope Shalini sees it the same way.

      100 hubs is not far away.

      Oh BTW you are so CHEEKY, but it is why we love you !

    • Daisy Mariposa profile image
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      Daisy Mariposa 4 years ago from Orange County (Southern California)

      Steve (poshcoffeeco),

      It's 1:00am in Southern California (9:00am in England). I knew that if I stayed awake long enough, my friends in the UK would see my latest parody Hub before I went to sleep.

      I'm so glad you liked the parody, my friend. You're my 14th HubPages follower. I appreciate your loyalty.

      The next time you're in London, please go to the National Gallery and see the original of *your* painting.

      I'm working on some parodies now that are too cheeky to publish in HubPages. I might publish them in the new blog I'm working on.

    • Daisy Mariposa profile image
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      Daisy Mariposa 4 years ago from Orange County (Southern California)

      Gail (Happyboomernurse),

      It's nice to "see" you again. I'm glad you enjoyed my painting parody Hub. This is the seventh one in the series. I hope you get a chance to read some of the others.

    • tillsontitan profile image

      Mary Craig 4 years ago from New York

      Congratulations on seventy-five hubs. You've done so much and gone so far already!

      This had to be your best parody yet. The Felt Hat with Simone is incredibly real. I love the parodies and I love the education you provide with them. This was a great idea and I hope you continue...I need more education in art.

      Voted up, useful, funny and interesting.

    • fpherj48 profile image

      Paula 4 years ago from Beautiful Upstate New York

      Daisy....They continue to get better and better....Simone in The Felt Hat, is actually so good, it appears to be an original. I saw Simone's excellent hub on numerous facial expressions. Now, there's a virtual smorgasbord, just for you and your parodies!!

      btw.....in a prior hub, I loved the "Nell Rose" royalty...she looks like a natural, don't you think? Think it has anything to do with living in England?.........UP++

    • Daisy Mariposa profile image
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      Daisy Mariposa 4 years ago from Orange County (Southern California)

      Mary (tillsontitan),

      Thanks for reading my Hub and adding your comment. I'm glad you're enjoying the series.

      When I created my first parody Hub, I had no idea I was going to publish any more parody articles, let alone how popular a series would prove to be. I'm definitely going the continue with the parodies.

      My degree is in Fine Arts, and I specialized in art history in college. The subject matter for my parodies is endless.

    • Daisy Mariposa profile image
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      Daisy Mariposa 4 years ago from Orange County (Southern California)

      Paula (fpherj48),

      Thanks for reading my Hub and commenting. I appreciate your continued support. I was very surprised to find a Peter Paul Rubens painting I could use. In most of his paintngs, the figures are unclothed.

      When I saw Rubens' The Felt Hat, I knew Simone Smith would be the perfect model. It's great that Simone included a Creative Commons license in her Hub for the photographs. If she hadn't, I wouldn't have been able to use any of them.

      I'm glad you liked the Nell Rose parody in my Royalty Hub. That's another case of my knowing who my model should be as soon as I saw the painting.

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      Poetic Fool 4 years ago

      Daisy, very entertaining and funny! I think you are having entirely too much fun with this!

    • Vellur profile image

      Nithya Venkat 4 years ago from Dubai

      I enjoyed this hub, liked it very much. Your hubs are entertaining and an eyeopener to many interesting facts. I learn a lot too. Voted up.

    • Nell Rose profile image

      Nell Rose 4 years ago from England

      These were great! I wrote a comment, and then my pc failed again! lol! I thought Simone was great, but the winner has to be shalini! she looked so natural! wonderful stuff, and thanks to effer above too! haha! that's me, Queen of England! lol!

    • ChristyWrites profile image

      Christy Birmingham 4 years ago from British Columbia, Canada

      Steve Mitchell with the sunglasses cracks me up! I also like the one of Simone Smith. Great laughs for today thanks Daisy!

    • jellygator profile image

      jellygator 4 years ago from USA

      This was a fun and creative read!

    • Jools99 profile image

      Jools99 4 years ago from North-East UK

      Ah...Daisy, Steve beat me to it, I've been at work all day. I see that Steve really liked it :o) and why wouldn't he - immortalised forever as a work of art!

    • Deborah Brooks profile image

      Deborah Brooks Langford 4 years ago from Brownsville,TX

      Daisy you did an awesome job on this.. so much fun to red.. I love it..my favorite was The Marriage of Giovanni Arnolfini and Giovanna Cenami (Steve Mitchell and Shalini Sharan).. love it.. debbie

    • teaches12345 profile image

      Dianna Mendez 4 years ago

      Interesting piece of history on Jan van Eyck painting. I can't see the images in the mirror here, but I will see if I can find it online. Fun, creative piece of talent on this hub!

    • ThoughtSandwiches profile image

      ThoughtSandwiches 4 years ago from Reno, Nevada

      hi Daisy...

      Well first I was expecting a hub on the USS Iowa and then I was expecting to see Truman's nose. Needless to say...I will need to delete the one pic that made it on to Facebook.

      In terms of art history...awesome! I remember each of these (including mine) from my hours in art history classes!

      Thanks for the Inclusion,

      Thomas

    • Daisy Mariposa profile image
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      Daisy Mariposa 4 years ago from Orange County (Southern California)

      Rick (Poetic Fool),

      Thanks for reading and commenting in another of my Hubs. I'm glad you're enjoying my painting parody series.

      My 4-year degree is in Fine Arts, and I'm certified to teach all art subjects in Kindergarten through the 12th grade. The subjects I enjoyed the most in college were art history and painting. I'm having a great time creating the parodies, and I'm using the knowledge I gained in my college days.

    • Daisy Mariposa profile image
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      Daisy Mariposa 4 years ago from Orange County (Southern California)

      Nithya (Vellur),

      Thanks for reading my Hub and commenting. I'm glad you're learning something new about history from reading my articles.

    • Daisy Mariposa profile image
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      Daisy Mariposa 4 years ago from Orange County (Southern California)

      Nell (Queen Elizabeth I),

      I'm glad you're enjoying my painting parody series. It's difficult for me to believe that this is my seventh parody Hub.

      The van Eyck painting featuring Steve and Shalini was the most difficult parody I've done. Having to erase the original faces in a layer in my Photoshop file wasn't easy to do.

    • Daisy Mariposa profile image
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      Daisy Mariposa 4 years ago from Orange County (Southern California)

      Christy,

      Thanks for reading my Hub and commenting. I had a photo of Steve without his sunglasses on that I could have used. I thought, however, that having Steve wear the glasses added a touch of class to the parody

    • Daisy Mariposa profile image
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      Daisy Mariposa 4 years ago from Orange County (Southern California)

      Kathy (jellygator),

      It's nice to meet you. I'm glad you enjoyed my Hub. This is the seventh painting parody Hub I've created. I hope you get a chance to read some of the others. "What is a Parody?" is a good article with which to start.

    • Daisy Mariposa profile image
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      Daisy Mariposa 4 years ago from Orange County (Southern California)

      Julie (Jools99).

      Thanks for visiting again. Yes, Steve liked the parody in which Shalini and he appeared. Steve's not the only person who was immortalized in a work of art...what about the Gauguin parody in which you were wearing a dress?

    • Daisy Mariposa profile image
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      Daisy Mariposa 4 years ago from Orange County (Southern California)

      Debbie,

      Thanks for reading my article and commenting. I'm glad you enjoyed my Hub. This is my seventh painting parody. Have you had a chance to reading any of the others?

    • Daisy Mariposa profile image
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      Daisy Mariposa 4 years ago from Orange County (Southern California)

      Dianna (teaches12345).

      Thanks for reading my Hub and commenting. The reflections in the mirror can be seen when you view the painting in bright light.

    • Daisy Mariposa profile image
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      Daisy Mariposa 4 years ago from Orange County (Southern California)

      Thomas (ThoughtSandwiches),

      I'm glad you enjoyed the parody. Thanks for being one of my models. There are two photographs of you on your Facebook page. Even if you delete both of them, I still have the image I downloaded.

    • Dexter Yarbrough profile image

      Dexter Yarbrough 4 years ago from United States

      What fun! These parodies are great! The Marriage of Giovanni Arnolfini and Giovanna Cenami is my absolute favorite! Great! Great!

    • Daisy Mariposa profile image
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      Daisy Mariposa 4 years ago from Orange County (Southern California)

      Dex,

      Thanks for reading my Hub and commenting. I'm glad you enjoyed the parodies.

      This is my seventh parody Hub. Have you had a chance to read any of the others? If you haven't, you might want to start with "What is a Parody?"

    • Anil and Honey profile image

      Anil 4 years ago from Kerala

      very good work,

    • Daisy Mariposa profile image
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      Daisy Mariposa 4 years ago from Orange County (Southern California)

      Anil,

      It's nice to meet you. Thanks for reading my Hub and commenting. Have you had a chance to read any of my other painting parody Hubs?

    • Sunshine625 profile image

      Linda Bilyeu 4 years ago from Orlando, FL

      Very clever and creative! Thomas, Glen, Steve and Shalini look fabulous!! Simone looks so realistic. Well done all around.

    • Daisy Mariposa profile image
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      Daisy Mariposa 4 years ago from Orange County (Southern California)

      Linda (Sunshine),

      Thanks for reading my article and viewing the parodies. I heard from Simone via e-mail. She loved the parody, and the other Hubs in the series. She'll comment when she has more time.

      I'm working on another parody Hub now, using paintings from the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam. I'll probably publish it tomorrow.

    • Gypsy Rose Lee profile image

      Gypsy Rose Lee 4 years ago from Riga, Latvia

      Voted up and awesome. Great job Daisy. Wonderful the information, the pics and parodies. Always a delight to read and see. Passing this on.

    • Daisy Mariposa profile image
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      Daisy Mariposa 4 years ago from Orange County (Southern California)

      Rasma (Gypsy Rose Lee),

      It's nice to "see" you again. Thanks for reading and commenting in another of my Hubs.

      The popularity of my painting parody Hub series surprises me. I created "What is a Parody?" to showcase the parody with which my friend Docmo Kumar (Mohan) surprised me. If Mohan hadn't created the parody of me, I would never have thought to create my first parody Hub.

    • Docmo profile image

      Mohan Kumar 4 years ago from UK

      Great work again, Daisy- you're getting better and better at matching the hubber profiles to the paintings. These are a rare delight. As always the interesting art history gives the extra oomph to this hubs. This series is a great one for fun, facts and frolics. voted up, need I say. It is kind of you to attribute these creations to my Daisy-with-a-pearl-earring parody. However, I did that long after you did sunshine Mona Lisa- so all credit right back to you. :-)

    • Daisy Mariposa profile image
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      Daisy Mariposa 4 years ago from Orange County (Southern California)

      Mohan (Docmo),

      Thanks for reading and commenting in another of my Hubs. I appreciate your continued support and your very kind words.

      People have been creating parodies of famous paintings for hundreds of years. One of the most often used paintings for the creation of parodies is Leonardo da Vinci's Mona Lisa. I wrote a hub about Mona Lisa and presented several examples of parodies. At the very last minute prior to publishing my article, almost as an afterthought, I created Sunshine Mona Lisa.

      My Hub wasn't about my painting parodies. It was about parodies that other people had created.

      You surprised me by creating Daisy Mariposa with a Pearl Earring, a parody of Jan Vermeer's Girl with a Pearl Earring. You're a polymath, an expert in many fields. You did such a terrific job with the parody, I wanted everyone to see it. That's why I published the Hub "What is a Parody?"

      When I published the Hub, the thought of writing a series of parody articles hadn't crossed my mind. It was the success of "What is a Parody?" that gave me the impetus to write other painting parody Hubs. If you hadn't created the Vermeer parody for me, I wouldn't have published any parody Hubs after Mona Lisa.

      I still maintain that I have you to thank you for getting me started in my painting parody publishing niche. Thank you. my friend.

    • Doc Sonic profile image

      Glen Nunes 4 years ago from Cape Cod, Massachusetts

      Daisy, your parodies are cool. This is a nice niche you've discovered! And I think I look really good in that headwear! :) Thanks for including me in one of your parodies!

    • Daisy Mariposa profile image
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      Daisy Mariposa 4 years ago from Orange County (Southern California)

      Glen (Doc Sonic),

      Thanks for reading my article and adding your comment. Thanks, too, for serving as my model in the parody of Giovanni Bellini's Portrait of the Doge Leonardo Loredan.

      The success of my art history / painting parody niche has come as a surprise to me. I'm very pleased with the many positive comments I've received.

    • cclitgirl profile image

      Cynthia Sageleaf 4 years ago from Western NC

      What fun! You're so creative with these parody hubs. I love how you interweave a little history with some parodies and likenesses of others. You're really good at this. :)

    • Daisy Mariposa profile image
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      Daisy Mariposa 4 years ago from Orange County (Southern California)

      Cyndi (cclitgirl),

      Thanks for reading and commenting in another of my Hubs. I appreciate your kind words very much.

      I'm currently working on a painting parody Hub that features the paintings in the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam, Netherlands. All of the models are HubPages writers, most of whom you know.

      An interesting feature of one of the parodies in my next Hub is that the parody was created by two people. I expect to publish the article, my eighth parody Hub, on July 12th.

    • DeborahNeyens profile image

      Deborah Neyens 4 years ago from Iowa

      I've never been to the National Gallery, but I love visiting art museums, so I will put this on my list. You did a nice job with the revision, Daisy.

    • Daisy Mariposa profile image
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      Daisy Mariposa 4 years ago from Orange County (Southern California)

      Deb,

      Thanks so much for reading my article and commenting in it. It's unfortunate that I had to remove all my parodies. They'll be making an appearance in one of my blogs soon.

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      Vincent Moore 4 years ago

      I love this very interesting chronicle. Back in 1964 I had the opportunity to visit London and France. I was just a teen visiting with a friend. We toured all the museums and art galleries and the National Gallery was one of my favourite visits. I love art and the artists behind their brushes. Voted UP and shared with great enthusiasm.

    • Daisy Mariposa profile image
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      Daisy Mariposa 4 years ago from Orange County (Southern California)

      Vincent,

      Thanks for reading and commenting in yet another of my articles. I appreciate your continued support of my writing.

      The National Gallery is one of my favorite art museums. I try to visit there whenever I'm in London. I've written a number of museum and art history Hubs. I hope you'll have an opportunity to read some of the others.

    • Lady Guinevere profile image

      Debra Allen 2 years ago from West By God

      Very interesting. Voted up and across the board!

    • Daisy Mariposa profile image
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      Daisy Mariposa 2 years ago from Orange County (Southern California)

      Debra (Lady Guinevere),

      Thanks for reading my article and posting your comment. The National Gallery is a terrific museum in one of my favorite cities.

    • Susan Hambidge profile image

      Susan Hambidge 2 years ago from Hertfordshire, England

      Nice hub. I popped in this gallery on Friday after a meeting finished early. I headed straight to the Impressionist wing, my favourite genre, and spent a little time there. I did view a few Italian Renaissance pieces before hopping back on the tube home. Following.

    • Daisy Mariposa profile image
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      Daisy Mariposa 2 years ago from Orange County (Southern California)

      Susan,

      Welcome to HubPages. It's nice to meet you. Thanks for reading my article and posting your comment.

      Since your like Impressionism, you might enjoy reading my "Impressionism vs Expressionism" Hub.

    • vocalcoach profile image

      Audrey Hunt 2 years ago from Nashville Tn.

      Love this hub! When I enlarge the photos it's almost like viewing them

      live. I've not had the opportunity to visit London. The National Gallery London would be my first stop. But next to being there your hub provides an amazing likeness. Thank you Daisy. Voted UABI and sharing.

    • Daisy Mariposa profile image
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      Daisy Mariposa 2 years ago from Orange County (Southern California)

      Audrey (vocalcoach),

      Thanks for reading my article and posting your comment. Thanks, too, for sharing my Hub.

      I've spent many hours at the National Gallery during the dozen times I've visited London. When I lived in New Jersey, it was just as easy for me to fly to London as it was for me to fly to California.

      I hope you have a chance to vacation in London. It's a great city.

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