This book uses the busts on the Chantrey Wall in the Ashmolean Museum to give an introduction to the remarkable career of Francis Chantrey (1781-1841), and the collection in the Ashmolean. The book charts the progress of the busts from Chantrey's workshop to a Victorian national treasure: the first monographic collection of British sculpture to become a part of a permanent museum collection. It follows the return of the busts from basement storage to their conservation and triumphant redisplay in the new building. The book begins and ends with the Chantrey Wall, one of the most photographed displays of recent years. The book will give non-specialist readers an introduction to one of the giants of British sculpture, and one of the most important sculpture collections in the country. Contents:
Introduction; Sir Francis Chantrey (1781-1841); Chantrey's Models: An Assemblage of Precious Objects; Chantrey's Plasters: Display and Reputation; The Changing Fortunes of the Chantrey Collection in the Ashmolean; Reading Chantrey in the Ashmolean Museum; Sources and Further Reading; Acknowledgements.