Luca Signorelli, also known as Luca da Cortona, was probably born sometime between 1445-1450. Although little information is available on his private life, he is reputed to have been a family man, living relatively comfortably. Signorelli was renowned for his use of foreshortening and his aptitude as a draughtsman. His nudes and enormous frescoes also set him aside as an artist of great skill. Michelangelo is said to have used some of these figures for his work on the Sistine Chapel wall. His work, the Last Judgement, is considered to be his greatest accomplishment. Its spectacular composition is regarded as being one of the most important of Italian Renaissance art.

Christopher Dresser was an English designer whose knowledge of past styles and experience with modern manufacturing processes made him a pioneer in professional design. Dresser successfully introduced to British design elements from many cultures across the world, especially Japanese. He created ceramics, metalwork, silver, glass, textiles, wallpaper, and other items. Dresser was notably important in introducing modern industrial techniques by working directly with manufacturers to produce elegant and affordable products. A lot of Dresser’s metalwork designs are still in production today, which are now manufactured by Alessi. One of his Old Hall designs is thought to have inspired Alan Garner’s 1967 novel ‘The Owl Service’.

Drummond & Co. was a partnership between Samuel Brush and William Drummond in Collins Street. It was called the Brush & MacDonnell Company. The name was changed after the death of Samuel Brush in 1878, which was maintained till its closure. The company had been renowned for style and quality since inception. At Drummond & Co., all royalty, entertainers, politicians and gentry have had the Drummond experience, where exclusive jewellery, fine china, crystal and the sniff of snobbery combined to affirm one’s social status. Even some cashed-up underworld figures and brothel madams had a reputable outlet in which to spend their money.

Modern art refers to works of art produced roughly from 1850 to 1970. The term is often used ambiguously to refer to artwork created after the said period. After all, the term modern is used to refer to the current time. One could say that modern art is the art of change. It was born in an era that saw the dawn of industrialisation that created a wave of change, affecting everything. Modern artists’ techniques adapted with the changing philosophies and technological advancements that emerged in their time. They focused on and tried to capture what was happening around them, how they saw it, and how it made them feel.