The Art Museums near Merseyside, Liverpool:

Superb Erotic 19th c. art in the Lady Lever Art Gallery, Port Sunlight.

Plus: 19th C  art works of all ages in the Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool.

Plus: a side trip to Manchester, Art Gallery – male chauvinist art versus woman-friendly art.



In better times, after re-opening: Please book a time slot ticket for yourself and for the guide. New: Private Audio system available.

Guided tour in the Lady Lever Art Gallery.

Nots of nudes:  It it Vulgar Porn or High Victorian Art ???

The Lady Lever Art Gallery on the far side of the Mersey river was founded by Sunlight soap tycoon William Lever, 1st Viscount Leverhulme and the art shown here reflects the erotic taste of himself and his wife, Lady Lever. Opened in 1922, the Lady Lever Art Gallery is beautifully set in the garden village and factory workers heaven of Port Sunlight. From John Lennon Airport, Liverpool it is about a 45 min taxi ride. Alternatively there is a good train connection from Liverpool

This collection undoubtedly exhibits the most erotically charged collection of fine art paintings and sculpture of any art museums I visited in about 40 years. For myself, this visit was a life long dream come true. For women’s Lib this collection may be a bit over the top in terms of dominant Patriarchy Males ogling submissive nymphs. Here we go with just a few highlights:

A surprisingly small high-definition scene painted by Dutch artists Alma-Tadema. His works have been described as ‘Marbellous’. Good planning: he added Alma to his last name to end up as nr 1 under letter A in art catalogue listings.

Devlish forse grabs innocent sweet Salambbo. Inspired by the novel by Gustave Flaubert, the story is set in Carthage, North Africa, 3rd C BCE. Tittilating it was indeed: indiscriminate violence and sensuality is prevalent throughout the novel.

By Onslow, sculptor. A nude 11 year pre-pubescent girl, quite undressed, for all to see. Present day works of art like this, produced now, would get enormous flak. The artists called the scene ‘Snowdrift’. Could one argue this is early child porn or is it elevated high art?

In 1892 Frederic Lord Leighton, President of the Royal Adademy in London, painted Hesperides. Languid these three scantily dressed young beautiful nymphs, sunset goddesses, are good at relaxing. Do we hear “male gaze” ?

Daphnephoria, or Laurel bearer, reminds us of a religious festival in honour of Apollo. This XXL painting also by Frederic Lord Leighton. The glass in front of it is not entirely helpful for viewing.


Guided tour in the Walker Art Gallery, Liverpool.


A digital Zoom visit with your private art historian, our plan B in Covid 19 / Corona  times. I will show you my image bank of paintings inside. And give you a high quality tour.

In better times, after re-opening: The Walker Art Gallery presents excellent collections of Victorian artists including Royal Academy artists such as Frederic, Lord Leighton; furthermore a good sprinkling of Pre-raphaelites and a smaller holding of international artists of many centuries  . Initially funded by the Liverpool brewer Walker, it opened 1877.  Building and collections were much extended in the following decade.

Walker art gallery: Detail of a 1877-78Leighton painting: Elijah in the Wilderness. Here his fleeing from Jezebel the Killer.  An angel provides sustenance.

Lucien Freus paints the photographer Diamond. After WW2 the nation’s artists were trying to get a new foothold after so much destruction and bloodshed.

Leighton: 1891 Perseus, son of Danae and Zeus, about to kill the very dangerous Gorgon Medusa, who would kill all that looked at him/her.

Ford Madox Brown, detail of the Coat of many Colours, referring to Jacob’s dream after he was sold into slavery. The painter researched Middle Eastern images available to him.

Many galleries have been built. This one for the older fine art.

A corner of the Pre-Raphaelite room, with to the left Waterhouse scene with nymphs.

Please note: As your VIP tour guide and art historian, I will fly in from Amsterdam and will stay there (at your cost). Our museum visit can perhaps be extended for a number of days and nights to the excellent art museums of Birmingham, Manchester, Cambridge.

Side trip to the Art Gallery Manchester.

A digital Zoom visit with your private art historian, our plan B in Covid 19 / Corona  times. I will show you my image bank of paintings inside. And give you a high quality tour.

In better times, after re-opening: Philosophy…My educators tole me: If you cannot say anything nice about somebody, or something, you should probably say nothing at all. Yet my toes curl here…See the captions for my personal viewpoints. Please book a time slot ticket for yourself and for the guide. New: Private Audio system available.

The Art Gallery of Manchester, England, moved and reopened  1882; it is a short train trip away from Liverpool. The gallery has fine art collection consisting of more than 2,000 oil paintings, 3,000 watercolours and drawings, 250 sculptures, 90 miniatures and around 1,000 prints.

Francis Derwent Wood, Atlanta, c 1907. “Perceived as modern muscular”. In 2019 I witnessed a school class of about 10 year old muslim boys spotting this sculpture and getting the thrill of a lifetime.

William Etty, The Sirens and Ulysses (detail) 1837. They are trying to let Ulysses sail into the rocks, but do not succeed.

Birmingham Art Gallery, NOT to be confused with Birmingham Museum.

Ford Madox Brown. Work, painted between 1852-1856. This painting requires close reading and pondering. It is an image of society as a whole.

British Navvies hard at work, in Ford Madox Brown. Work, detail.

Street girl pulling boy’shair in Ford Madox Brown. Work.

William Holman Hunt, The Light of This World, 1951-1856. Outdoor, moonlight. Christ wearing a crown.

William Holman Hunt, The Hireling Shepherd, 1851 (detail). The flock goes astray due to lack of serious attention of the male + female. Bad work ethic.

William Holman Hunt, The Scapegoat (detail) 1854-55. Dead sea and Atonement. Referrals to Christ.

Frederic Lord Leighton, an XXL painting of Captibve Andromache, ca 1888. Shown here is Hector her husband, with premonition of doom.

Dutch gallery: Jan Miense Molenaer, 1635, Child in trouble, school master punishes. Harsh beatings were considered normal.

Soul searching by the staff: do we want too how this male chauvinist sexist art? Out with it! Middle background Roman Chariot Races, c 1882, by Alexander von Wagner.

Heavy stairwell in the old entrance. Shown here is bad male-dominated art. Be aware.

John William Waterhouse, Hylas and the Nymphs, 1896. Water Numphs try to keep the Argonaut Hylas from dong his manly task. Transfixed, he drowned. Lots of female sensuousness. Removed by female staff in the quest to get rid of male chauvinist Porn. There was a serious backlash and an the press reported: Feminism gone Mad. The painting was back in the gallery after a week of uproar.

It seems that the present day staff and director do not like what they own and wish that everything in the museum must be  transformed into a perfect woman-friendly, anti Male-Chauvinist, anti-Patriarchy, anti-Porn and anti Rich dead Males art museum. Ideal: to be woman-friendly. With gender Equality.

Quality of this tour: The day after my return from the art museums in Middle England, I gave a tour of the Royal Collection of Paintings, Mauritshuis, The Hague.  My client write this review the same day: “Hello Kees! I want to thank you again for our exquisite tour of the Mauritshuis museum today! This might sound cliche, but it was truly a dream come true!!  I could never have imagined having someone of your qualifications leading our private tour! You are such a gift to art lovers!  Thank you again and best wishes!  Virginia Swanson. PS. And, by the way…. your tour was worth 10 times… even100 times,  the amount we paid!  We’re beyond grateful!  Again , best wishes!”

More trips:

ENGLAND, London, National Gallery

ENGLAND, London, British Museum

ENGLAND, London, Wallace Collection

ENGLAND, Liverpool, Lady Lever art Gallery and Walker Art Gallery

ENGLAND, Birmingham Museum and Barber Institute

ENGLAND, Fitzwilliam, Cambridge


Drs Kees Kaldenbach, art historian, in front of the Night Watch by Rembrandt.