A 350 year old embroidered panel has gone on display in Glasgow after it was bought by the trustees of the Burrell Collection with a grant of £15,000 from independent charity The Art Fund and the help of the National Fund for acquisitions.
Judith with the Head of Holofernes is a key addition to the Burrell’s internationally significant collection of 17th century embroideries. The panel was made in Britain around 1660 from silk satin worked in silk and silver thread and silver purl. It also contains the coat of arms of Luke Lloyd impaled with Katherine Whitely and the initials of their daughters appear in the border around the panel. This rare provenance and the exquisite workmanship of the panel make it such a valuable addition to the collection.
Sir William Burrell’s Trust was created to oversee the conditions of the gift of the Burrell Collection to the City of Glasgow, and manage the funds left to support the enhancement of the Collection. The Trustees continue to provide funding towards the acquisition of objects for the Collection – items that Sir William himself might have bought.
Bailie Liz Cameron, Chair of Culture and Sport Glasgow said: “The magnificent embroideries of the Burrell Collection attract many enthusiastic visitors to Glasgow and have enthralled generations with the amazing skill and care taken to make them. By adding this panel the museum will be able to change displays in the interests of conserving their condition, while always having the finest quality pieces on display. Judith is such a remarkable figure, a woman moved to unprecedented action by the need to defend her people. “
Andrew Macdonald, Acting Director of The Art Fund said: “This is a strikingly sophisticated example of the needleworker’s intricate art and a significant addition to the Burrell Collection. It joins the iconic painting, Judith with the Head of Holofernes by Lucas Cranach the Elder, bought by the Burrell Trustees with Art Fund help in 1995.”