The exhibition showcases many works from its own collection along with those loaned by The Arts Council Collection. There is something to please everyone; from the early pioneers of the eighteenth century, like Angelica Kauffman, founding member of the Royal Academy, to Pre-Raphaelite painters, a Royal Princess and suffragettes. This exhibition explores the ways that women have re-shaped the art world against the odds, by challenging convention and expectation.
Curator and Collections Officer Duncan Walker can recommend several of his favourite works to PRS members, such as the Cooksey painting ‘Maria Virgo’, as the conservation work has really brought out the exquisite high quality of the piece. The drawings by Violet Manners, the Duchess of Rutland, are also strong favourites; ‘The Souls are such an interesting and influential bunch. She had an obvious gift with a pencil. You get a real and immediate sense of the sitter from her drawings.’
The permanent collection also showcases Pre-Raphaelite favourites such as Dante Gabriel Rossetti’s ‘Venus Verticordia’ and Eleanor Fortescue Brickdale’s ‘If One Could Have That Little Head of Hers’.