SOURCE: The Savoy, A Fairmont Managed Hotel

The Savoy, A Fairmont Managed Hotel

September 12, 2012 04:00 ET

55 Years in the Making: The Savoy Unveils Panoramic Painting of the River Thames

LONDON--(Marketwire - Sep 12, 2012) - The Savoy is delighted to unveil a new study of the River Thames, which beautifully illustrates some of the changes in the London skyline over the last 55 years. Inspired by a drawing in the hotel's collection that shows the Thames in 1957 and by Canaletto's iconic work 'The River Thames on Lord Mayor's Day,' artist-in-residence, David Downes, was commissioned to create the piece for the London hotel's Front Hall.

Positioned at the same vantage point on the roof of the hotel as the 1957 piece, Downes captured the panoramic views in fine detail, including landmarks such as the Houses of Parliament and St Paul's Cathedral, as well as new additions -- the Shard, the Gherkin and the London Eye. The piece also serves as a record of the historic Thames Diamond Jubilee Pageant when a 1000-strong flotilla sailed past the London hotel.

"The Savoy has enjoyed a long history of playing host to artists and commissioning artwork," commented Kiaran MacDonald, Managing Director of The Savoy. "We are delighted to have continued this tradition by working with David Downes to create a wonderful record of London and of such a historic occasion as the Thames Diamond Jubilee Pageant." 

Downes, born in 1971, was diagnosed with high-functioning developmental autism in his 30's and he believes that his artistic talent is connected to his autism. Most of his pieces are cityscapes -- infused with feeling and emotions, and drawn from memory.

"I was very excited to have been asked by The Savoy to paint such an important occasion. The cityscape by itself is inspiring but the pomp and ceremony of the River Pageant made this a unique commission," Downes commented. "I felt that I had the best seat in London from which to capture these stunning views and the glory of the pageant. It is a day that I will never forget."

Prints of the painting will be available to purchase from this luxurious London hotel, including a limited edition -- signed and frames -- series of 60. For further details please contact The Savoy at 020 7836 4343 or email