Yale Center for British Art Exhibitions
The Paston Treasure: Microcosm of the Known World
Thursday, February 15, 2018
Sunday, May 27, 2018
The seventeenth-century painting The Paston Treasure (ca. 1663) is an enigmatic masterpiece. Commissioned by either Sir William Paston, first Baronet (1610–1663), or his son Robert Paston, first Earl of Yarmouth (1631–1683), the identity of the painter, a Dutch itinerant artist working out of a makeshift studio at Oxnead Hall, remains unresolved, although candidates have been proposed. Adding to its mystique, the painting defies categorization because it combines several art historical genres: still life, portraiture, animal painting, and allegory. It has provided the opportunity to think anew about seventeenth-century studio practice and the painter-patron relationship. The painting makes its North American debut this year at the Yale Center for British Art in an exhibition organized in partnership with the Norwich Castle Museum & Art Gallery, UK.
Tuesday, April 3, 2018
Sunday, August 12, 2018
The Center will present an exhibition of work by the contemporary British artist Celia Paul (b. 1959) in spring 2018, the first in a series of three successive exhibitions curated by the Pulitzer Prize-winning author Hilton Als. This exhibition, specially selected by Als in collaboration with the artist and a deeply personal testament to their transatlantic friendship, will focus on Paul’s recent works, which will explore intimacy and inwardness. Als’s subsequent installments at the Center will feature works of Lynette Yiadom-Boakye in 2019 and an artist to be selected later this year, who will be shown in 2020.
Following the final exhibition, the Center will publish a volume of Als’s personal reflections on the three artists.
Britain in the World
The third phase of an important multiyear building conservation project has been completed, and visitors can now experience not only a renewed masterpiece of modern architecture by Louis I. Kahn but also a freshly reimagined installation of the Center’s collections. More than five hundred works, largely the gift of the institution’s founder, Paul Mellon (Yale College, Class of 1929), are on display in the newly restored and reconfigured galleries on the third and fourth floors.
Tracing the growth of a native British school of artists, the installation reveals how frequently the story of art in Britain focuses on a narrative of international exchange. The new arrangement addresses the impact of immigration and travel on British art and culture across the centuries, and the role that the arts have played in the history of Britain’s imperial vision, exploring the ways in which the perception of the British Empire influenced how Britons saw themselves and others. Featured in the display are the Netherlandish artists who provided the foundations of British art in the Tudor period (1485–1603), as well as the seventeenth-century Flemish artists Peter Paul Rubens and Anthony van Dyck, the eighteenth-century Venetian artist Canaletto, the German artist Johan Zoffany, and American artists John Singleton Copley and Benjamin West.