Explore the painters that inspired early photographers and the photographs that changed painting
This exhibition celebrates the visual links between early photography and British art, bringing together fascinating vintage photographs and stunning paintings including Pre-Raphaelite, aesthetic and impressionist works.
Spanning 75 years across the Victorian and Edwardian ages, the exhibition showcases the experimental beginnings of photography right through to its flowering as an independent international art form. These are displayed alongside the paintings which they inspired and which inspired them.
This is the first time works by John Everett Millais, Dante Gabriel Rossetti, JAM Whistler, John Singer Sargent and others will be shown alongside photographs by pivotal early photographers such as Julia Margaret Cameron and Alvin Langdon Coburn
(Jane Morris was the model for Rossetti’s Proserpine brooding in the underworld, where she is fated to stay because she ate part of a pomegranate. It has been suggested that the picture reflected Rossetti’s feelings about (his later lover) Jane’s marriage to fellow artist and designer William Morris. Though the model for Zaida Ben Yusuf’s study of the same subject, made in 1899 (the year Rossetti’s painting was published as a photogravure), is anonymous, it bears a resemblance to the photographer herself. A working class woman from London, the success of Ben-Yusuf’s New York portrait studio owed much to her unconventional style and decor and her innovative, art-inspired compositions. Ben-Yusuf’s pomegranate has not yet been bitten, changing the emphasis of the picture from regret to temptation.)
11 May – 25 September 2016