at home: Art in Context | New light on a portrait of Elihu Yale, his family, and an enslaved child

April 27, 2021

Edward Town, Head of Collections Information and Access at the Center, discusses a work in the museum's collection.

at home: Art in Context

Art in Context, the Center's gallery talk series, is now online. Presented by faculty, staff, visiting scholars, and student guides, these lectures are held on the last Tuesday of each month during the academic year. Each talk focuses on a particular work of art in the Center's collections, or a special exhibition, and takes an in-depth look at its style, subject matter, technique, or time period.

About this program

Join Edward Town for a discussion about an eighteenth-century group portrait depicting the university’s early benefactor Elihu Yale, members of his family, and an enslaved child. New findings and recent research undertaken at the Center will inform a reinterpreted display of the portrait and a web-based presentation to illuminate the painting's history in the Center's collection and the multiple ways in which its complex past has been explored.

Prior to Yale, Town worked at the National Portrait Gallery, London. After studying the history of art at the University of Nottingham, he received his master's degree from the Royal College of Art and Victoria and Albert Museum, and his PhD from the University of Sussex. His research focuses on the lives and working practices of artists of the sixteenth and seventeenth centuries.