Symposium: ‘Collecting Murillo in Britain and Ireland’; The Wallace Collection, London, 14 May 2018



Bartolomé-Esteban Murillo, The Marriage of the Virgin, c.1660-1670, The Wallace Collection

‘Oh wonderful Spain. Think of this romantic land covered in Moorish ruins and full of Murillos’

Benjamin Disraeli’s 1830 letter attests to the prominence of Bartolomé Esteban Murillo in the minds British travellers and collectors. In celebration of the 400thanniversary of Murillo’s birth, the Wallace Collection, in collaboration with the Centro de Estudios Europa Hispánica, will be exploring this further by hosting an international one-day symposium on 14th May 2018 entitled ‘Collecting Murillo in Britain and Ireland’.

Speakers include Thierry Morel, Veronique Gerard Powell, Xanthe Brooke, Hugh Brigstocke, Isabelle Kent, Xavier Bray, Claudia Hopkins, Thomas Bean, Hilary Macartney and Philip McEvansoneya. We are delighted to have this group of acclaimed scholars coming together to discuss new research surrounding the collecting of Murillo in Britain and Ireland.The seminars delivered will form the basis of a new volume on the subject to be published by CEEH.

Please follow this link to buy tickets for the conference.


09:30 – Registration

09:50 – Welcome

Session 1) Early Displays of Works by Murillo in Britain

10:00 – Sir Robert Walpole’s Spanish Pictures. Thierry Morel (Director and Curator at Large, Hermitage Museum Foundation)

10:30 – From Lord Godolphin to John Blackwood and Lawrence Dundas: the first British purchasers of Murillo. Véronique Gerard Powell (Honorary Senior Lecturer, Sorbonne University)

11:00 – tea and coffee break

Session 2) British Collectors in Seville and Madrid

11:30 – Collecting Murillo in Seville: the case of Julian Benjamin Williams (d.1866) and Frank Hall Standish (1799-1840). Xanthe Brooke (Curator of Continental European Art, Walker Art Gallery)

12:00 – William Eden: the discovery of Murillo with his friends in Spain. Travel and collecting. Hugh Brigstocke (independent scholar)

12:30 – The curious case of General Meade (1775 – 1849): his collection in Madrid and its dissemination. Isabelle Kent (Enriqueta Harris Frankfort Curatorial Assistant, The Wallace Collection)

13:00 – Break for lunch (not included)

14:00 – William Buchanan and James Irvine: In-situ talk in the Great Gallery. Xavier Bray (Director, The Wallace Collection) and Isabelle Kent

Session 3) Artists and Scholars travellers to Spain

14:30 – ‘All softness’ – Murillo through British artists’ eyes. Claudia Hopkins (Lecturer, University of Edinburgh)

15:00 – Hand-Book for Travellers in Spain and Richard Ford. Thomas Bean (private researcher)

15:30 – Accessing Murillo: Stirling Maxwell’s contribution to scholarship, collecting and taste in Britain. Hilary Macartney (Lecturer, University of Glasgow)

Session 4) Other Major Collectors

16:00 – Collecting and displaying Murillo in Ireland. Philip McEvansoneya (Lecturer, Trinity College Dublin)

16:30 – Close


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