Click here for previous lectures

02 October 2019Europe’s Best Kept Secret - The Painted Monasteries of Bulgaria
06 November 2019 The Founders and treasures of the Wallace Collection
04 December 2019100 years of deception: hoaxes and swindlers in the 18th century
15 January 2020Portraiture of 18 century Britain
05 February 2020Gilbert and Sullivan the birth of English operetta
04 March 2020Christina Rosetti and her artists
01 April 2020 Figures in the City: Picturing People in Post-war London
13 May 2020Paul Durand Ruel, the madman who ‘made’ the impressionists
03 June 2020‘The most perfect painter of his age’: Understanding Bruegel’s Enyclopaedic Pictures

Click on a row and scroll to display more details about the lecture

Europe’s Best Kept Secret - The Painted Monasteries of Bulgaria John Osborne Wednesday 02 October 2019

John graduated in Classics at Cambridge University and taught Classics at Marlborough College for over thirty years. Worked for the British Council in Iran and Turkey, and lectures in Islamic Civilisation. Tutor, Marlborough College Summer School. Lecturer, Department of Continuing Education, University of Bath. Guide at Salisbury Cathedral. Lecturer on cruises and leader of numerous study tours to Bulgaria, Romania, Iran, and Turkey and other countries in S.E. Europe and the Mediterranean. Lecture tours of Australia (twice) and New Zealand.

Bulgaria's rich and varied cultural history deserves to be better known. The country's well-preserved mediaeval monasteries are part of the Byzantine tradition of Orthodox religious art and architecture. The lecture illustrates the Christian history of the country through its monasteries, concentrating on their fascinating frescos and icons and explaining their religious significance. The context of the lecture is Bulgaria's mountain landscapes and its long history, so that it includes prehistoric Thracian tombs, Roman public buildings and beautifully conserved vernacular architecture from the Ottoman period. This lecture will suit those who enjoy religious art in its cultural context.