Lecture by Julia Dudkiewicz – ‘Dante Gabriel Rossetti at Kelmscott Manor’ 25 June

Venue: Birmingham & Midland Institute, 9 Margaret Street, Birmingham – Lecture starts at 11.00 a.m. Reception from 10.30am.

Kelmscott Manor is remembered today mainly as the country home of William Morris. The house was, however, originally rented by Morris and Rossetti, who took out a joint lease in 1871. Rossetti spent two years (24 September 1872 – 11 July 1874) in permanent residence at Kelmscott, following an initial three-month stay in 1871 (11 July – 8 October). During this time he occupied the Bachelor’s Bedroom and the adjoining Tapestry Room, which doubled as his sitting room and studio. The house saw the creation of some of his best-known pictures. Rossetti also made a mark on the decorative scheme of Kelmscott, as he filled the rooms with an avant-garde mixture of antique furniture, decorative objects and Old Masters. The lecture will examine Dante Gabriel Rossetti’s association with Kelmscott Manor by looking at his only known painting depicting the interior of the house, The Marigolds (1874, oil on panel, Nottingham City Museums and Galleries) and a number of his personal possessions left behind at Kelmscott.

Julia Dudkiewicz is a Courtauld-trained art historian and curator (The Headley Trust scholarship) with a specialism in 19th-century British art and cultural history. Julia is currently pursuing a PhD, supported by a Central Saint Martins College research grant, looking at Kelmscott Manor as an influential resort of Victorian artists, including major cultural figures such as Dante Gabriel Rossetti. Her most recent curatorial appointment was as Principal Curator of Guildhall Art Gallery, City of London, where she designed the Victorian rehang, launched in January 2015, in recognition of which she was awarded the Freedom of the City of London. Previous roles have included Collections Manager of the Society of Antiquaries of London (2008-2013) with responsibility for the art collections at Kelmscott Manor and Burlington House, Assistant Curator of Watts Gallery in Surrey (2003-2008), and Honorary Curator of Aldourie Castle (2009-2011). Julia has published widely on Victorian art.

For further details relating to the event mentioned above please email info@Pre‑Raphaelitesociety.org.

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Visit: ‘Poetry in Beauty: The Pre-Raphaelite Art of Marie Spartali Stillman’ at Watts Gallery 21 May

The Pre-Raphaelite Society will be visiting the Watts Gallery in Compton, Surrey for the latest exhibition, curated by Jan Marsh and Margaretta Frederick. Watts Gallery is the only UK venue for this landmark exhibition.

The Poetry of Beauty exhibition is a retrospective of Marie Spartali Stillman, one of the small number of female artists working within the Pre-Raphaelite circle. This exhibition will showcase her stunning landscapes, delicate portraits and detailed subject paintings. Many of these paintings have been lent by private collectors and have not been exhibited since the artists lifetime. Whilst at Watts Gallery there will also be time to explore the newly opened Studios, existing gallery areas and the beautiful Watts Chapel.

For further details relating to the event mentioned above please email info@Pre‑Raphaelitesociety.org.

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Lecture by Professor Anna Gruetzner-Robins – ‘Remembering Rossetti’ 23 April

Venue: Birmingham & Midland Institute, 9 Margaret Street, Birmingham – Lecture starts at 11.00 a.m. Reception from 10.30am.

Rossetti had a lasting appeal for the artists of the 1890’s. Charles Ricketts, Charles Shannon and their circle at the Vale were devotees of Rossetti – they collected his work and illustrations of it, paid homage to him in their own pictures and publications. They visited Fanny Cornforth and also Rossetti’s grave. This lecture will focus on this fascination with Rossetti, and raise questions about his enduring importance for the next generation.

Anna Gruetzner-Robins is Professor Emerita at the Univeristy of Reading where she taught History of Art. She has published widely on Degas, Sickert and Whistler including Walter Richard Sickert: The Complete Writings on Art, 2000; Degas, Sickert and Toluouse‐Lautrec, (with Richard Thomson), 2005; and A Fragile Moderism: Whistler and his Impressionist Followers, 2007. She is currently completing a book about the 1890’s.

For further details relating to the event mentioned above please email info@Pre‑Raphaelitesociety.org.

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Latest issue of ‘The Review’ out now- Vol. XXIII, No. 3, Autumn 2015

The latest edition of ‘The Review’, Vol. XXIII, No. 3, Autumn 2015, is now available. Members receive ‘The Review’ for free but copies can also be purchased by non-members. Please email info@Pre‑Raphaelitesociety.org for details.

1. “’Twofold silence as the Song of Love’: the application of Pater’s concept of Anders-streben, within his discourse of Aestheticism, to Dante Gabriel Rossetti’s The House of Life” by Azelina Flint.
2. “Richard Doyle and John Everett Millais: Their Tempests Revisited” by Naoko Asano.
3. “Reinventing Malory’s Le Morte Darthur: Conflicted Chivalry in the Early Prose of William Morris” by Ellen O’Brien.
4. “’Art is Promoted by a Cultivated Mind’ A Victorian Collector’s Thoughts on Pre-Raphaelitism” by Duncan Walker.
5. “Unfinished” a poem by Sarah Doyle.
6. Announcement: The John Pickard Essay Prize for 2015.
7. Announcement: The Pre-Raphaelite Society Poetry Prize for 2015.
8. “Book Review Sculpture Victorious Exhibition Catalogue by Martina Droth, Jason Edwards & Michael Hatt” by Stephen G. Maddison.
9. “Book Review The Subject of a Portrait by John Harvey” by Jordan Kistler.
10. “Book Review Those Wild Wyndhams: Three Sisters at the Heart of Power by Claudia Renton” by Helen Robinson.
11. “Book Review The Many Faces and Voices of Angela Thirkell: A Literary Examination of the Brotherton Collection by Mary Faraci” by Mark Jones.
12. “Book Review The People’s Galleries: Art Museums and Exhibitions in Britain, 1800-1914 by Giles Waterfield” by Madeleine Pearce.
13. “Book Review Louisa Waterford and John Ruskin: ‘For you have not Falsely Praised’ by Caroline Ings-Chambers” by Nic Peeters.
14. “Book Review The Correspondence of Dante Gabriel Rossetti 10, Index, Undated Letters and Bibliography” by Simon Cooke.
15. “Book Review The Pre-Raphaelites and Italy Exhibition Catalogue by Colin Harrison and Christopher Newall” by Stephen G. Maddison.
16. “Book Review Liberating Fashion: Aesthetic Dress in Victorian Portraits by Rhian Addison & Hilary Underwood” by Katja Robinson.
17. “Book Review Samuel Palmer: Shadows on the Wall by Matthew Vaughan” by Mark Jones.
18. “Book Review Bodies of Light by Sarah Moss” by Kirsty Stonell Walker.
19. “William Morris” a poem by Edward Nudelman.
20. Meeting Reports.
21. Notes and Queries.

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Lecture by Dr. Robyne Calvert – ‘The Myth of Pre-Raphaelite Dress’ 19 March

Venue: Birmingham & Midland Institute, 9 Margaret Street, Birmingham – Lecture starts at 11.00 a.m. Reception from 10.30am.

In both academic and popular discussions, it has been presumed that those associated with the Pre-Raphaelite circle often went about publicly in unconventional clothing that expressed their Bohemian lifestyle. This talk will offer discussion of so-called ‘Pre-Raphaelite Dress’ to dispel myths and gain a clearer understanding of how and when this group flouted sartorial convention – if they did at all.

Dr Robyne Erica Calvert is a Mackintosh Research Fellow at the Glasgow School of Art, coordinating and developing research efforts relating to the reconstruction of the famous Mackintosh building after the 2014 fire. She is also a visiting lecturer in art and design history at the University is Glasgow. She received a Pasold Fund PhD bursary for her thesis Fashioning the Artist: Artistic Dress in Victorian Britain, 1848-1900 (University of Glasgow, 2012), which she is currently editing for publication. Previous to this, she was a museum professional in the United States, as well as an art educator.

For further details relating to the event mentioned above please email info@Pre‑Raphaelitesociety.org.

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News: Jan Marsh attending the PRS book club Feb 28

The fourth book club meeting will be hosted by the London and Southern Group, at 2pm on Sunday the 28th of February. We will be reading Jan Marsh’s ‘The Legend of Elizabeth Siddal’, available from Amazon. Jan Marsh will be attending to answer member questions!

The meeting will take place in the basement seating area of Costa Coffee, 112 Southampton Row, London, WC1B 4BL. A casual, guided round table discussion over beverages will take place, with the option for further socializing afterwards. All Society members are welcome to attend but please RSVP before February 27th so a headcount can be done.

If you are interested in attending the book club, please contact Madeleine Pearce, the London and Southern Group coordinator at nouveaudigital@gmail.com.

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Call for papers- Reading Art: Pre-Raphaelite Painting and Poetry, Birmingham, 27-28 May 2016

Keynote Speakers: Professor John Holmes (University of Birmingham) and Dr Dinah Roe (Oxford Brookes University)

Reading Art is a two-day conference hosted by Birmingham Museums Trust and organised by Birmingham City University, on 27th-28th May 2016. The conference is part of a wider project which explores Pre-Raphaelite painting and poetry, and is supported by the AHRC Cultural Engagement fund. For more information on the project and the conference, see our blog: https://readingart.wordpress.com/.

For the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood and those associated with them, painting and poetry were sister arts. Many Pre-Raphaelite paintings were inspired by literature, and many poems were written to accompany paintings. The interest in and practice of these intertwining strands is one which was widespread in Pre-Raphaelitism, from Dante Gabriel Rossetti and William Morris to less well-known figures such as Edward Hughes and Marie Spartali Stillman. This conference will explore and celebrate the many ways in which art and literature are related in Pre-Raphaelitism, and there will also be opportunities to explore BMAG’s Pre-Raphaelite collection and visit the Burne-Jones stained glass in St Philip’s Cathedral.

Abstracts of up to 300 words are invited; please send to Dr. Serena Trowbridge (serena.trowbridge@bcu.ac.uk) by March 21st 2016. Topics may include buBeata Beatrix (BMAG)t are not limited to:

  • the work of a particular artist or poet
  • the exploration of depictions of poetry in art, or vice versa
  • readings of the visual and the verbal
  • the broader relationship between art and literature in the 19th century
  • sources of literary/artistic inspiration
  • disjunctions between art and literature
  • subsequent representations of Pre-Raphaelite art or literature
  • Creative submissions will also be considered.

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