New Hall Art Collection

Curator, Harriet Loffler, writes about the extraordinary collection of art by women at Murray Edwards College, Cambridge. The New Hall Art Collection was started by women and celebrates art made by women, in a Cambridge college dedicated to the education of outstanding young women. Today, the Collection has over five hundred works of modern andContinue reading “New Hall Art Collection”

Lydia Lopokova, Duncan Grant, and the Mystery of the Blue Dress

Duncan Grant’s captivating portrait of Ballets Russes prima ballerina Lydia Lopokova, currently hanging in the WE ARE HERE: Women in Art at Cambridge Colleges exhibition at The Heong Gallery, was painted in 1923, a few months after Lydia had turned 30. It depicts her in three-quarter length, wearing a blue empire-line dress, a gold, patterned shawl draped over her long gloves. The painting was inspired by Jean-Auguste-Dominique Ingres’ Mademoiselle Caroline Rivière (1806), a photograph of which Duncan kept in his studio at Charleston.


Two fantastical garments hang on loose chains off a blank wall. Although tethered for the duration of the exhibition, the brightly-coloured robes only take on their true meaning when donned for a performance of Emilia Galotti’s Colouring Book of Feelings by artist, writer, and scholar, Sophie Seita. With the scheduled date for the performance lookingContinue reading “SOPHIE SEITA: MY LITTLE ENLIGHTENMENT PLAYS”

In Focus: Three Flower Paintings

When looking at works of art, we sometimes forget to ask one simple question- ‘Why is this here?’. All the works in WE ARE HERE: WOMEN IN ART AT CAMBRIDGE COLLEGES are owned by Colleges, or were displayed in them at some point. The three exceptional flower paintings discussed in this blog are no different.Continue reading “In Focus: Three Flower Paintings”

Introduction WE ARE HERE: Women in Art at Cambridge Colleges

Dr Prerona Prasad, curator of WE ARE HERE at The Heong Gallery at Downing College, introduces the exhibition. “Eleven years after a human set foot on the moon, the first women undergraduates crossed the threshold of Downing College to take their places as full members. Downing’s own ‘one small step for a man’ would takeContinue reading “Introduction WE ARE HERE: Women in Art at Cambridge Colleges”

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