Leighton House and Sambourne House

Leighton House and Sambourne House Celebrating the work, passions and life stories of two Victorian artists and their remarkable studio-houses: Frederic Leighton and Linley Sambourne.

Leighton House is the former home of the Victorian artist Frederic, Lord Leighton (1830-1896). The highlight of any visit is the spectacular Arab Hall and its striking collection of Syrian tiles from 16th and 17th centuries. Sambourne House is the ‘House Beautiful’ o of Victorian illustrator Linley Sambourne (1844-1910) and his family. The extravagant and eclectic interiors remain practically inta

Leighton House is the former home of the Victorian artist Frederic, Lord Leighton (1830-1896). The highlight of any visit is the spectacular Arab Hall and its striking collection of Syrian tiles from 16th and 17th centuries. Sambourne House is the ‘House Beautiful’ o of Victorian illustrator Linley Sambourne (1844-1910) and his family. The extravagant and eclectic interiors remain practically inta

Temporarily closed

We have been busy ‘behind the scenes’ photographing and cataloguing more of the beautiful objects and artworks which fil...
07/10/2021

We have been busy ‘behind the scenes’ photographing and cataloguing more of the beautiful objects and artworks which fill Leighton House.

Here is a sneak peek at a few of our favourite details so far...

🧜‍♂️ Ivory table inlaid with design of Neptune, horses and boats. The inlaid panel at the centre is a copy, with some differences, after Pellegrino Tibaldi's (1527-1596) fresco in the Palazzo Poggi in Bologna. The table sits in Leighton's drawing room.

🌷 Chaise Longue in Morris & Co 'Tulip' blue fabric (designed in 1875) which can be found in the Silk Room.

👩‍👦 Plaster copy of Michelangelo's 'The Virgin and Child with the Infant St John (The Taddei Tondo)' which hangs on the wall of Leighton's studio.

Photography by Jaron James.

Explore more from our collections: https://www.rbkc.gov.uk/museums/collections

Dr Melanie Gibson, who leads our upcoming 'A Passion for Tiles' online course, speaks to our friends at Asia House for t...
05/10/2021

Dr Melanie Gibson, who leads our upcoming 'A Passion for Tiles' online course, speaks to our friends at Asia House for their recent Arts & Learning 'Ask the Expert' interview!

https://asiahousearts.org/ask-the-expert-melanie-gibson/

For more information & bookings for our 'A Passion for Tiles with Dr Melanie Gibson', please see: https://www.rbkc.gov.uk/museums/saturday-art-studio-passion-tiles

Dr Melanie Gibson, who leads our upcoming 'A Passion for Tiles' online course, speaks to our friends at Asia House for their recent Arts & Learning 'Ask the Expert' interview!

https://asiahousearts.org/ask-the-expert-melanie-gibson/

For more information & bookings for our 'A Passion for Tiles with Dr Melanie Gibson', please see: https://www.rbkc.gov.uk/museums/saturday-art-studio-passion-tiles

05/10/2021

Join celebrated textile artist Lora Avedian's 'Saturday Art Studio: Inspired by Gardens & Nature' - an online embroidery workshop inspired by the classic Morris & Co 'Fruit' wallpaper found in Sambourne House 🍋🍑

🗓️ REVISED DATE – Due to unforeseen circumstances, this workshop will be postponed to a new date in January. We have informed all ticket holders and for those still interested, please keep an eye on our social media and website for updates. For any queries, please get in touch with [email protected]
💰 £60 (includes embroidery kit)

https://www.rbkc.gov.uk/museums/whats-on

National Lottery Heritage Fund

Today marks the anniversary of William Morris' death, and although 125 years have passed the designs of Morris & Co are ...
03/10/2021

Today marks the anniversary of William Morris' death, and although 125 years have passed the designs of Morris & Co are as popular as ever!

Numerous Morris & Co prints can be spotted throughout the rooms of Sambourne House, added by both Linley & Marion Sambourne, and later in the 1960s by the Countess of Rosse, their granddaughter.

Here are a few of our favourites!

1-2: 'Norwich' wallpaper in the main bedroom
3-4: 'Fruit' on black wallpaper in the dining room
5-6: Morris & Co staircase carpet designed by Henry Dearle
7-8: 'Willow Bough' wallpaper in the maid's room
9-10:'Fruit' on blue and cream wallpaper in the morning room

If you're a Morris fan - don't miss our 'Saturday Art Studio: Inspired by Gardens & Nature' - an online embroidery workshop inspired by the classic Morris & Co 'Fruit' wallpaper! 🍋🍑

🗓️ REVISED DATE – Due to unforeseen circumstances, this workshop will be postponed to a new date in January. We have informed all ticket holders and for those still interested, please keep an eye on our social media and website for updates. For any queries, please get in touch with [email protected]
💰 £60 (includes embroidery kit)

https://www.rbkc.gov.uk/museums/whats-on

📷 by Jaron James
National Lottery Heritage Fund

Due to unforeseen circumstances, we had to move the date of our final 'Breakfast Bites: A Passion for Drawing' with Seni...
02/10/2021

Due to unforeseen circumstances, we had to move the date of our final 'Breakfast Bites: A Passion for Drawing' with Senior Curator Daniel Robbins - which means there's one last chance for you to book!

In the final session we'll be 'Comparing Cimabue and Clytie'...

The painting Cimabue’s Celebrated Madonna was Leighton’s first submission to the Royal Academy in 1855. Clytie was amongst his last pictures, left unfinished in his studio at the time of his death over forty years later. This session looks at some of the drawings relating to these two pictures to establish both the similarities and differences between them and what this tells us about Leighton and his work.

🗓️ Thursday 7 October, 8.30 to 9.15am
💰 £5
⚠️ Sales close: Wednesday 6th at 4.30pm (BST)

⭐ MORE INFO + TICKETS https://www.rbkc.gov.uk/museums/breakfast-bites-passion-drawing

National Lottery Heritage Fund

Standing within a colonnade of arches set inside a garden, this four figure tile panel can be found within the Arab Hall...
30/09/2021

Standing within a colonnade of arches set inside a garden, this four figure tile panel can be found within the Arab Hall of Leighton House.

Elegantly dressed in the fashion of the court of early 17th century Iran, this was the time when the ruler Shah Abbas I (r. 1588–1629) made the city of Isfahan his capital and started an extensive building programme.

This style of ware is sometimes given the name Kubachi, after a town in the Caucasus, because large quantities were traded, collected and taken there. They were subsequently discovered by 19th century Armenian, Russian and European travellers who initially assumed they had also been made there.

Learn more about the rich history and artistry of these tiles and more in our upcoming online course: A Passion for Tiles with Dr Melanie Gibson.

📅 Four Monday sessions from 11 October, 2 to 4.30pm
1️⃣ Introduction
2️⃣ Tiles of Iznik and Damascus
3️⃣ Tiles of Iran
4️⃣ Tiles in Leighton's Arab Hall
💰 £200 for the entire course

⭐ MORE INFO + TICKETS
https://www.rbkc.gov.uk/museums/passion-tiles-dr-melanie-gibson

Numbers are limited, so please book early to avoid disappointment.

National Lottery Heritage Fund

27/09/2021

⭐ New dates added ⭐

Due to popular demand, we've added more Sunday dates until December, plus NEW Thursday morning departures for our guided walks of the Holland Park Circle!

Exploring the exteriors of the unique group of studio-houses built by Victorian artists in the area, discover the fascinating history of why they came to build here and the architects they chose.

Thursdays and Sundays, 11am to 12.30pm

⭐ MORE INFO + TICKETS https://www.rbkc.gov.uk/museums/artists-houses-walking-tours

Numbers are limited, so book early to avoid disappointment.

National Lottery Heritage Fund

Inspired by the lush floral patterns of Iznik and Damascus ceramics found at Leighton House, join celebrated artist and ...
23/09/2021

Inspired by the lush floral patterns of Iznik and Damascus ceramics found at Leighton House, join celebrated artist and illuminator Ayesha Gamiet on our upcoming online workshop! 🌷

Learning traditional painting and shading techniques from the rich world of Islamic art, you'll recreate an intricate tile inspired design to produce your own beautifully finished artwork.

🗓️ Saturday 16 October, 10am to 4pm BST
💰 £145

⭐ MORE INFO + TICKETS
https://www.rbkc.gov.uk/museums/saturday-art-studio-passion-tiles

Numbers are limited, so please book early to avoid disappointment.

National Lottery Heritage Fund

London Craft Week is almost here and our friends at the Barakat Trust are offering two wonderful experiences!5 OctoberSu...
23/09/2021

London Craft Week is almost here and our friends at the Barakat Trust are offering two wonderful experiences!

5 October
Supported by the Barakat Trust, see behind the scenes of The Wallace Collection's conservation studio and meet the experts cleaning, conserving and photographing its extensive holdings of Indian arms and armour!

10 October
Learn how to make a beautiful leather cuff with award-winning jeweller Tania Clarke Hall, inspired by the architectural patterns of medieval Cairo.

Find out more:

https://www.londoncraftweek.com/events/behind-the-scenes-conserving-indian-arms-and-armour/

https://www.londoncraftweek.com/events/making-leather-jewellery-with-tania-clarke-hall-at-the-barakat-trust/

London Craft Week is almost here and our friends at the Barakat Trust are offering two wonderful experiences!

5 October
Supported by the Barakat Trust, see behind the scenes of The Wallace Collection's conservation studio and meet the experts cleaning, conserving and photographing its extensive holdings of Indian arms and armour!

10 October
Learn how to make a beautiful leather cuff with award-winning jeweller Tania Clarke Hall, inspired by the architectural patterns of medieval Cairo.

Find out more:

https://www.londoncraftweek.com/events/behind-the-scenes-conserving-indian-arms-and-armour/

https://www.londoncraftweek.com/events/making-leather-jewellery-with-tania-clarke-hall-at-the-barakat-trust/

⭐ New Online Course ⭐Learn how to hand embroider a design by celebrated textile artist Lora Avedian, inspired by the cla...
20/09/2021

⭐ New Online Course ⭐

Learn how to hand embroider a design by celebrated textile artist Lora Avedian, inspired by the classic Morris & Co wallpaper found in Sambourne House 🌿🍊

With a beautiful kit included with this online Saturday Art Studio session, you'll learn a combination of traditional embroidery stitches and appliqué to create your own finished artwork!

🗓️ REVISED DATE – Due to unforeseen circumstances, this workshop will be postponed to a new date in January. We have informed all ticket holders and for those still interested, please keep an eye on our social media and website for updates. For any queries, please get in touch with [email protected]

https://www.rbkc.gov.uk/museums/whats-on

National Lottery Heritage Fund #embroidery #embroideryart #embroiderykit #morrisandco #nature #artclass

⭐ New Online Course ⭐

Learn how to hand embroider a design by celebrated textile artist Lora Avedian, inspired by the classic Morris & Co wallpaper found in Sambourne House 🌿🍊

With a beautiful kit included with this online Saturday Art Studio session, you'll learn a combination of traditional embroidery stitches and appliqué to create your own finished artwork!

🗓️ REVISED DATE – Due to unforeseen circumstances, this workshop will be postponed to a new date in January. We have informed all ticket holders and for those still interested, please keep an eye on our social media and website for updates. For any queries, please get in touch with [email protected]

https://www.rbkc.gov.uk/museums/whats-on

National Lottery Heritage Fund #embroidery #embroideryart #embroiderykit #morrisandco #nature #artclass

20/09/2021
Meet Leighton and Sambourne

Illustrating Victorian Life...Meet Linley Sambourne (1844-1910)

See below key highlights or explore more fascinating content on our new website

www.rbkc.gov.uk/museums/sambourne-house

#LHSHMuseums #linleysambourne #sambournehouse #artisthouse #victorianartist #victorianillustration #cartoonillustration #britishartist #britishart #artishouse #housebeautiful

18/09/2021
FB What's On

⭐ New Online Course ⭐

Join expert historian Dr Melanie Gibson on a journey through the history of early Islamic tiles, as well as later European productions including William de Morgan. Each week includes a spotlight which looks in detail at the tiles of Leighton House.

📅 Four Monday sessions from 11 October, 2 - 4:30pm
1️⃣ Introduction
2️⃣ Tiles of Iznik and Damascus
3️⃣ Tiles of Iran
4️⃣ Tiles in Leighton's Arab Hall
💰 £200 for the entire house - limited capacity!

MORE INFO + TICKETS https://buff.ly/3Cr5SZX

Numbers are limited, so book early to avoid disappointment.

National Lottery Heritage Fund

17/09/2021

Step into a painter's world and meet Frederic, Lord Leighton (1830-1896)

See below key highlights or explore more fascinating content on our new website:

www.rbkc.gov.uk/museums/leighton-house

#LHSHMuseums

Passionate about drawing?Don't miss out our first two virtual classes tomorrow and Saturday 18 September. 📖 Start the da...
15/09/2021

Passionate about drawing?
Don't miss out our first two virtual classes tomorrow and Saturday 18 September.

📖 Start the day with our online Breakfast Bites seminar series over a virtual coffee, as Senior Curator Daniel Robbins presents rarely seen works from our collections and leads a friendly and informative discussion.

🎨 Or pick up a pencil and get creative yourself with the first two digital workshops of our new Saturday Art Studio programme. Led by London Fine Art Studios, learn how to translate what you see around you into beautiful drawings. Join us for the full series or take your pick of the individual sessions!

BOOK NOW: https://www.rbkc.gov.uk/museums/whats-on

Passionate about drawing?
Don't miss out our first two virtual classes tomorrow and Saturday 18 September.

📖 Start the day with our online Breakfast Bites seminar series over a virtual coffee, as Senior Curator Daniel Robbins presents rarely seen works from our collections and leads a friendly and informative discussion.

🎨 Or pick up a pencil and get creative yourself with the first two digital workshops of our new Saturday Art Studio programme. Led by London Fine Art Studios, learn how to translate what you see around you into beautiful drawings. Join us for the full series or take your pick of the individual sessions!

BOOK NOW: https://www.rbkc.gov.uk/museums/whats-on

15/09/2021
Museums site

📣 Our brand-new museums website is live!

Designed to bring you a richer and more engaging experience, the website is filled with fascinating content, an integrated booking solution for tickets and memberships and a sneak peek of the new museums shop, with the full range of bespoke merchandise coming soon!

💻📱Visit our website today and discover our museums, buy tickets for our virtual programme or make a donation!

www.rbkc.gov.uk/museums

14/09/2021
LH SH FINAL 14 Sept 2021

We are delighted to unveil our new brand identity that encompasses a redesigned logo and a revisited approach for audiences, programmes and interpretation of the museums' collections.
💙❤️
Both Leighton House and Sambourne House appear now reunited and unified under the same creative universe, whilst retaining their unique characters and identities that are a reflection of Leighton's and Sambourne's personalities.
❤️💙
The new logo is made of two interconnected blocks, suggesting architectural forms injected with bold colours reminiscent of the vibrant palette in Leighton's and Sambourne's house interiors. The bespoke typeface combines straight lines with quirky, irregular traces that are inspired by late 1800s calligraphy styles.
💙❤️
Our new look is supported by a profound transformation that will manifest through our reimagined vision and the core museums' mission. Join us in this exciting journey that will culminate with the big reopening in spring next year and celebrate two remarkable "Victorian Artists At Home"

#LHSHMuseums

For the past couple of years, at Leighton House and Sambourne House we have been working on a very special project that ...
14/09/2021

For the past couple of years, at Leighton House and Sambourne House we have been working on a very special project that is going to be unveiled very soon.

Today we are posting here some clues that might help you guess what the big reveal is...

Watch this space and tune in later for an exciting announcement!

#bigreveal #LHSH

For the past couple of years, at Leighton House and Sambourne House we have been working on a very special project that is going to be unveiled very soon.

Today we are posting here some clues that might help you guess what the big reveal is...

Watch this space and tune in later for an exciting announcement!

#bigreveal #LHSH

With a surprise September #heatwave in London this week, who else is heading for a swim? 🧜‍♀️From the time of the ancien...
07/09/2021

With a surprise September #heatwave in London this week, who else is heading for a swim? 🧜‍♀️

From the time of the ancient Greeks and the sea god Poseidon, merpeople have appeared in art and literature across cultures for thousands of years. As much a time of wonder as it was rational science, fuelled by specimens such as P. T. Barnum's Fiji mermaid, mermaids and mermen flourished in Victorian art.

Upon the walls of Leighton's Arab Hall, a mosaic frieze designed by Walter Crane depicts two mermaids in roundels with fish and starfish. Originally intended to display Sirens, Leighton was less than complimentary with Crane's original design's, calling them ‘duck-women’. And so, the sirens were eventually replaced by the mermaids we see today.

Merpeople also feature in the work of Linley Sambourne! Produced in 1888 'The Merman King and His Old Mother' was illustrated for the 'Little Mermaid' as part of a book of Hans Christian Andersen stories.

Address

12 Holland Park Road
London
W14 8LZ

High Street Kensington / Kensington Olympia Buses: C1, 9,23, 27, 28, 49, 328 Parking: Metered car parking is limited on Holland Park Road and surrounding streets. The Holland Park car park off Abbotsbury Road is approximately ten minutes' walk away.

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Our Story


  • We celebrate two unique Victorian artists: Frederic , Lord Leighton (1830-1896) and Edward Linley Sambourne (1844 - 1906)

  • Through their work, lives and passions and the remarkable homes and studios they created, we devise and deliver inspiring and inclusive ways into a world of art, history and creativity rooted in Victorian London.

  • Our dynamic programmes are for everyone, and include music, exhibitions and events, exploring these houses, their collections and the story of the surrounding artistic community, known as the ‘Holland Park Circle’.

  • We preserve and care for this legacy for the enjoyment and enrichment of present and future generations, while revealing meaningful connections with the contemporary world.
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