Saturday, December 21, 2002

Stolen Turners Recovered After Eight Years

Among the many scientists, musicians and artists that John "Mad Jack" Fuller supported and patronized was acclaimed painter JMW Turner. On 20/12/2002 Britain's Daily Telegraph reported:

Two Turner paintings stolen from the Tate's collection eight years ago and insured for £24 million have been recovered. The two Biblical works by the master Romantic landscape artist were taken while on display in Frankfurt, Germany. The 19th century works, described as two of Turner's most significant paintings, were found intact but without their original frames. One is titled Shade And Darkness: The Evening Of The Deluge, the other Light And Colour (Goethe's Theory): The Morning after the Deluge. They are now back in Britain and will go on display at Tate Britain from January 8. Tate chiefs were reluctant to talk about the recovery today as it could hamper the chances of finding a third artwork, from a German collection, stolen at the same time. Shade and Darkness was actually recovered in July 2000, but the discovery was kept secret while investigations continued. Light and Colour was recovered on Monday and both paintings were brought back to the UK on Wednesday.Tate director Sir Nicholas Serota said: "These two paintings are amongst Turner's most important works and, in their references to Goethe's colour theories, show him to be at the forefront of European intellectual inquiry."

© Copyright of Telegraph Group Limited 2002

Tuesday, December 17, 2002

Michael Faraday and John Fuller

"Up to 1833 Faraday was bringing the forces of nature in subjection to man on a salary of only £100 per annum, with house, coals, and candles, as the funds of the Institution would not at that time afford more; but among the sedate habitues of the place was a tall, jovial gentleman, who lounged to the lectures in his old fashioned blue coat and brass buttons, gray smalls, and white stockings, who was a munificent friend in need. This was John Fuller, a member of Parliament. He founded a Professorship of Chemistry, with an endowment that brings in nearly £100 a year, and gave the first appointment to Faraday for life. When the Institution became richer, his income was increased; and when, on account of the infirmities of age, he could no longer investigate, lecture, or keep accounts, the managers insisted on his still retaining in name his official connection with the place, with his salary and his residence there. Nor, indeed, could they well have acted otherwise; for, though the Royal Institution afforded in the first instance a congenial soil for the budding powers of Faraday, his growth soon became its strength, and eventually the blooming of his genius, and the fruit it bore, were the ornament and glory of the Institution."

Extracted from: MICHAEL FARADAY by J. H. GLADSTONE, PH.D., F.R.S.
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