The Heart of the Empire

By LUND, Niels Møeller, 1904 

The Heart of the Empire.

British Isles
  • Author: LUND, Niels Møeller
  • Publication place: London
  • Publication date: c.1904
  • Physical description: Mezzotint. Proof impression, signed by the artist in pencil at lower left.
  • Dimensions: Image: 530 by 705mm (20.75 by 27.75 inches). Sheet: 670 by 808mm (26.5 by 31.75 inches).
  • Inventory reference: 12515

Notes

One of 150 proof impressions of Niels Moeller Lund’s iconic painting, The Heart of the Empire’, signed by the artist.

Lund (1863–1916) was a Danish-born artist who grew up in Newcastle. The print shows the heart of London’s financial district, viewed from the roof of the Royal Exchange. It looks down on Bank Junction, with Mansion House on the left, surmounted by an English flag. Lund’s print presents London’s financial district as the powerhouse of British imperialism, providing the resources for expansion; Westminster and the Houses of Parliament appear only in the background. The architecture, such as that of Mansion House with its classical pediment and columns, also references the Roman Empire, to which the British Empire felt itself to be the heir.

The original painting now hangs in the Guildhall Art Gallery.