Exhibitions

The College Collections’ programme of special exhibitions are hosted in the Verey Gallery and the Tower Gallery. Both exhibition spaces are open to the students and staff of Eton College as well as the wider community, including schools and the general public. If you would like to view a special exhibition, please contact us at collections@etoncollege.org.uk or 01753 370590.

Sunday Openings:

The Verey Gallery is open to the public on Sunday afternoons between 2:30-5pm. The exhibition NEW FACES: Unexhibited Portraits from Eton’s Boarding Houses is open every Sunday from 28th April – 28th September 2019.

Enter via the Museum of Eton Life (follow signs from the High Street along Baldwin’s Shore) and entry to the temporary exhibition is at least every 15 minutes. No booking necessary. 

NEW FACES: Unexhibited Portraits from Eton’s Boarding Houses

Philip de László (1869-1937), Laura Anderson (née Lewis) 1928, oil on canvas

Anyone who has walked around the Foundation area of the college will have seen at least part of the impressive collection of portraits on display there. Much less well known are the extensive number of portraits hanging elsewhere, in boarding houses, school departments and other buildings.

More than three-quarters of Eton College’s collection of some 540 oil paintings are portraits. The Fine and Decorative Art collection also includes portraits in the form of drawings, watercolours, miniatures, prints and sculpture. Selections from thee exhibition have been shown in the past. Public exhibitions dedicated to Eton’s leaving portraits were held in 1951 (Tate) and 1991 (Dulwich Picture Gallery). However, these exhibitions featured many of the same works and were largely drawn from the collection normally on display in the Foundation area, and in particular the Provost’s Lodge. Of those hanging outside of the Foundation area, few have been exhibited in living memory.

Now, for the first time, the exhibition NEW FACES: Unexhibited Portraits from Eton’s Boarding Houses offers an opportunity to discover these less familiar faces, including leaving portraits, portraits of staff, significant Old Etonians and others associated with the college.

NEW FACES: Unexhibited Portraits from Eton’s Boarding Houses, Verey Gallery, 27th April – 22nd September 2019. To book a visit outside of Sunday opening times, contact us at collections@etoncollege.org.uk or 01753 370590

 

Death and the Doctor: Dying, Burying and Afterlives in the Seventeen Century

 

This exhibition looks at the experience and ideas of death, the corpse and posthumous life in seventeenth–century England. Its starting point is the writing of Norwich physician and author Sir Thomas Browne, whose extraordinary essay Urne-Buriall is an extended meditation on death, and particularly on what is left of us after we are gone: decaying remains, scraps of memories, and the possibility of eternal life. The exhibition looks at deaths, funerals, and resurrections as described in the sonorous language of the Book of Common Prayer, and in the works of Shakespeare, Donne, and Milton.

Alongside these, it presents the seventeenth-century fascination with the funerary customs of other cultures, from pyramids to catacombs to funeral pyres. Through contemporary illustrations, it explores the use of the dead body in the rapidly developing science of anatomy and it introduces Browne’s remarkable writings through Eton College Library’s fine collection of editions of his works.

Death and the Doctor: Dying, Burying and the Afterlife in the Seventeenth Century, College Library Tower Gallery, is open by appointment, 9th May – 1st November,  To book an appointment to visit Monday – Friday, contact us at collections@etoncollege.org.uk or 01753 370590 

Permanent Collection:

Seven Halts on the Somme by Hughie O’Donoghue, RA - Millington Drake Room

Victorian Stained Glass by Thomas Willement - Austen Leigh Corridor  

Currently on display adjacent to School Hall most Sunday afternoons from 23d September 2018 to 28th April 2019, 2:30 – 5pm. (Closed Easter Sunday and Sunday 28th April).

For further information see www.etoncollege.com/CollectionsAccess

Read about previous exhibitions.