Art in Focus: Blue

Friday, April 5, 2019
Sunday, August 11, 2019

This exhibition used the color blue to trace a visual and material history of British exploration, trade, and colonialism. Starting from a consideration of Britain’s growing control over maritime trade, this display proceeded to examine how blue was used to depict the landscapes and peoples of the “Orient” in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries and concluded with a consideration of the postcolonial interventions of Anish Kapoor.

Art in Focus is an annual initiative for members of the Center’s Student Guide Program, providing Yale undergraduates with curatorial experience and an introduction to all aspects of exhibition practice. The student guide curators for Art in Focus: Blue were Merritt Barnwell, SY ’21; Sunnie Liu, JE ’21; Sohum Pal, BR ’20; Jordan Schmolka, SM ’20; and Muriel Wang, TC ’20. In researching and presenting the exhibition, the students were led by Linda Friedlaender, Senior Curator of Education, and Jennifer Reynolds-Kaye, Curator of Education and Academic Outreach.

Edward Lear, Plains of Bengal, from above Siligoree (detail), 1874, watercolor, pen and brown ink, and gouache on paper, Yale Center for British Art

This exhibition and the accompanying brochure (which was available in the gallery and can be viewed now online) were generously supported by the Marlene Burston Fund and the Dr. Carolyn M. Kaelin Memorial Fund.