NEWS: National Portrait Gallery Announces Autumn 2019 Exhibitions

The National Portrait Gallery has confirmed details of its Autumn 2019 exhibition season including the first-ever major exhibition to focus on the untold story of the women of Pre-Raphaelite art. 

058_Thou Bird of God by Joanna Wells.jpg
Thou Bird of God by Joanna Wells

The London Gallery has confirmed details of  two exhibitions it will be displaying late 2019, with both displaying work that has never been seen in the UK before. 

On display from the 17th October 2019 and 160 years after  the first pictures were exhibited by the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood in 1849, the National Portrait gallery will display Pre-Raphaelite Sisters . The exhibition will be the first to concentrate on the overlooked contribution of twelve women who contributed to the movement in different ways. 

Featuring newly discovered works and unseen works from public and private collections across the world, the exhibition reveals the women behind the pictures and their creative roles in Pre-Raphaelite’s successive phases between 1850 and 1900. The display will feature the work of female artists such as Joanna Wells, Marie Spartali Stillman and Evelyn de Morgan whose work helped to establish the development of Pre-Raphaelitism alongside their male counterparts. 

The exhibition will contain paintings, photographs, manuscripts and personal items that also explore the roles women played as models, muses and helpmeets who supported and sustained the artistic output of the Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood.

Meanwhile, the National Portrait Gallery will also display the work of Elizabeth Peyton (3rd October-5th January 2020),  exploring  the development of Peyton’s unique portraiture from the 1990s to the present day. 

The works will range across a variety of media including portraits exhibited for the first time. In addition to the forty works  on display in the exhibition, Peyton will become the first artist ever to be given the run of the entire National Portrait Gallery, with a selection of her portraits dispersed throughout the permanent Collection, juxtaposing Peyton’s paintings with historic portraits from the Tudor period onwards. 

Talking about the news of the exhibitions Dr Nicholas Cullinan, Director, National Portrait Gallery London said: “I am delighted to announce these two new exhibitions for Autumn 2019, both of which will be viscerally beautiful and quietly political in highlighting the vital role women have played in shaping artistic movements and genres. I am particularly pleased to be collaborating with Elizabeth Peyton to bring her inimitable works to the National Portrait Gallery for the first time.”

For more information about the exhibitions visit:

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