Skip to content

Eloise Donnelly on Collecting and the Burlington Fine Arts Club

15 March 2019

‘A material influence imperceptibly exercised on the taste and judgement of the public’: The Burlington Fine Arts Club and the history of collecting

Review of:

Stacey J. Pierson, Private Collecting, Exhibitions, and the Shaping of Art History in London. The Burlington Fine Arts Club, London, Routledge, 2017; 222pp; 10 col. plates, 24 b. & w. illus., £120.00 hdbk; ISBN 978-1-138-23262-4

Eloise Donnelly (University of Cambridge and the British Museum) 20/ED1

Abstract: Founded in 1866 by the South Kensington curator John Charles Robinson, the Burlington Fine Arts Club played a critical role in the landscape of collecting and display over its near century long history. Occupying a unique space between museums, commercial art galleries, learned societies and traditional gentleman’s clubs, it functioned as a point of intersection between public and private collecting spheres and gave rise to a number of seminal exhibitions. Despite this, it has remained on the periphery of studies of the history of collecting. Stacey Pierson’s history of the Club, part of Routledge’s series Histories of Material Culture and Collecting, 1700-1950, seeks to address this gap in historiography, situating the Club and the networks that emanated from its lists of members within recent histories of collecting, museology, exhibitions and the art market and exploring its legacy for art historical criticism.

Key words: collecting, museums, art market, exhibitions, curating, networks

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: