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Postgraduate Researcher Presentation Series — Lucy West and Gemma Plumpton

Tuesday 4 May 2021, 18:00 to 19:00
Online event

Please join us for the third in a series of presentations from current Postgraduate Researchers based in the School of Fine Art, History of Art and Cultural Studies.

This week we will welcome Lucy West and Gemma Plumpton. The event will take place on Zoom and all are welcome.

The series is designed to establish dialogue between individuals with similar research concerns whilst enabling all attendees to gain an insight into the breadth of enquiry currently being conducted across the school.

By bringing two presenters together in this way, it is hoped conversation will be stimulated and maintained well beyond the virtual walls of the auditorium.

Lucy West

Lucy West is a third-year PhD researcher working on an AHRC-funded Collaborative Doctoral Partnership project between the School of Fine Art, History of Art and Cultural Studies, the National Gallery (London) and the Bowes Museum (County Durham).

Her research employs approaches grounded in art market studies to intersect and interrogate an acknowledged phenomenon in art historical discourse: the nineteenth-century revival in Britain of a taste for early European paintings dating to before 1500.

Drawing the focus away from art collectors, scholars and institutional actors such as curators, Lucy’s research makes the case that the revival of taste for early pictures should be contextualised within the increasing systemisation and trans-national nature of the British art market in the period.

This presentation gives a short overview of the emergence, endorsement, professionalization and expansion of dealer/agent networks and market mechanisms which affected the circulation of early paintings in Britain between 1800 and 1865.

Gemma Plumpton

Gemma Plumpton is a second-year collaborative PhD researcher working between School of Fine Art, History of Art and Cultural Studies and the National Gallery on a project which investigates the formation of the Lascelles collection of continental old master pictures during and after WWI, which are now at Harewood House.

This collection is of particular interest to scholars of the art market and the history of collecting because it is a rare example of a British aristocratic collector buying old masters in England in the early twentieth century, while the dominant narrative focuses on the exodus of such masterpieces – supposedly part of Britain’s national heritage – to America in the aftermath of the 1882 Settled Land Act and 1894 Finance Act.

This presentation will share research from Gemma’s current chapter-in-progress, which looks at the apparent dichotomy between public good and private profit in the context of the 6th Earl of Harewood’s arts philanthropy.

How to book

For a link to this event, or for more information about the series, please contact Benjamin Jenner  or Gemma Plumpton.

The intention is that these presentations will operate on a monthly basis during term time. It is also the intention that they should not only be the province of Postgraduate Researchers but that staff might also wish to present in a similar way.


TOOLBOX, DOING/THINKING, 2020.  Courtesy of Benjamin Jenner.