AN INTERIOR LIFE | William Johnston and his Collection

Cup, France, circa 1860, porcelain, soft paste. The Johnston Collection Foundation Collection, 1989A visually rich display of over 400 years of art history, AN INTERIOR LIFE offers a glimpse into one of Australasia’s best collections of its kind. William Johnston’s lifetime passion for beautiful things include rare and significant items, displayed within the luscious interiors of Fairhall exhibition-house in the leafy green suburb of East Melbourne.

AN INTERIOR LIFE showcases Johnston’s vast and eclectic collection including works on paper by one of the greatest printmakers of the eighteenth century, Giovanni Battista Piranesi (1720-1778), as well as many fine paintings including Regency miniatures by the acclaimed 18th Century miniaturist James Scouler.

Considered one of the greatest inventors and craftsmen of his age, Henry Hindley’s (1700-1771) exquisite longcase clock is also on display. Objects by world-renowned Wedgwood, first incorporated in 1895 as Josiah Wedgwood and Sons Ltd., the leading animalier of the 17th Century Jay Fyt, as well as the founder of the iconic Imperial typewriter, Hidalgo Moya, are just some of the noteworthy artists and engineers on display.

One of the few exhibition-houses in Australia to be unfettered by ropes and barriers, visitors will be guided through the Museum, enjoying exotic stories of travel and tales of the past from over 1,400 objects, paintings, ceramics, furniture and objet d’art.

It was William Johnston’s intention that, Fairhall, be regularly rearranged. Past rearrangements have included those by fashion designer, Akira Isogawa, architect, Pascale Gomes-McNabb, fashion-house, Romance Was Born, artist Rosslynd Piggott, Artistic Director of The Australian Ballet, David McAllister AO, milliner and artist Richard Nylon and design studio Hecker Guthrie.

The experience begins at The Pullman on The Park, where visitors are picked up by courtesy bus and travel a few short minutes to the Museum to begin their tour. AN INTERIOR LIFE continues to explore one of the themes underpinning The Johnston Collection, that old is new again.

AN INTERIOR LIFE | William Johnston and his Collection will be on display 17 February – 22 September 2020. For more information, visit: www.johnstoncollection.org for details.

Image: Cup, France, circa 1860, porcelain, soft paste. The Johnston Collection Foundation Collection, 1989

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