Flaming June: The Making of an Icon
(4 November 2016 – 2 April 2017)
Flaming June:The Making of an Icon (4 November 2016 – 2 April 2017) is a landmark exhibition for Leighton House Museum, returning Leighton’s most famous and celebrated work to the artist’s house from the Museo de Arte de Ponce in Puerto Rico. Frederic, Lord Leighton (1830-1896), was one of the pre-eminent artists of his day. President of the Royal Academy from 1878 to 1896, he achieved great fame and influence as a figurehead for art in late Victorian society; a period when art enjoyed unprecedented public interest and appreciation.
Depicting a sensual, sun-drenched, sleeping female figure wrapped in orange draperies against a Mediterranean backdrop, the exhibition explores the extraordinary story of this picture, from its creation in Leighton’s studio, its first critical reception at the Royal Academy, through its ‘disappearance’ in the middle of the twentieth century, its acquisition by Luis A. Ferré, Governor of Puerto Rico for the Museo de Arte de Ponce in 1963 and subsequent rise to international fame as one of the most memorable and reproduced images in the whole of British art.