Lady Godiva painting travelled to Paris  - The Coventry Observer

Lady Godiva painting travelled to Paris 

Holly Clement 22nd Jun, 2024   0

COVENTRY’s Lady Godiva oil painting from the late nineteenth century has been loaned to the Palace of Versailles for an exhibition dedicated to horses and equestrian civilisation in Europe.

The painting has been part of Herbert Art Gallery and Museum collections for decades and is a leading piece in the venues Discovery Godiva Gallery and was painted by John Collier.

It travelled 400 miles to the former residence of the French Royal Family and now one of the world’s most popular cultural visitor attractions.

The exhibition will run to coincide with the equestrian events at the Paris Olympic Games and the painting is due to return to Coventry in November.

Martin Roberts, curatorial manager at the Herbert Art Gallery and Museum, said: “We are excited that John Collier’s depiction of Lady Godiva will be showcased at the Palace of Versailles.

“This prestigious opportunity allows one of Coventry’s most treasured works to gain international exposure in the context of a remarkable exhibition on equestrian civilisation – I think its inclusion underscores the piece’s artistic and cultural importance.




“We look forward to seeing it return to Coventry in November after captivating audiences in France during the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.”

John lived between 1850 and 1934 and was a British artist known for his contributions to the Pre-Raphaelite and Victorian art movements.


The painting captures the figure of Lady Godiva – the 11th-century noblewoman who is famous for protesting against her husband’s oppressive taxation of the citizens of Coventry.

According to legend, she rode naked through the streets of Coventry, covered only by her long hair, to win a remission of the taxes.

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