'In the Frame: Plymouth’s Portraits Revealed', Plymouth Museum & Art Gallery, from 13 December 2014

Posted: 19 November 2014

John Penwarne of Penwarne by John Opie c.1781. Plymouth City Museum and Art Gallery. John Penwarne inherited the ancient but diminished estate of Penwarne in Mawnan, Cornwall. He was a friend and benefactor of Opie and was a well-connected member of Cornish society in the late 18th Century.

A new exhibition drawn from Plymouth’s own collections, In the Frame focusses on Plymouth’s portrait collections, including works that are new or that have been rarely seen in recent years.   The exhibition will allow visitors to come face to face with some of Plymouth’s maritime greats – from Hawkins and Raleigh to 18th Century Admirals and George Gibbon, the[...]



An audience with Dr William Hunter by Sarah Backhouse

Posted: 30 March 2015

Dr William Hunter lecturing by Johan Zoffany, c.1770-1772. Royal College of Physicians, London

In 1825, ‘Mrs Baillie’ bequeathed a remarkable conversation piece by Johan Zoffany to the Royal College of Physicians (RCP). This painting represents the Scottish-born anatomist, surgeon and midwife Dr William Hunter giving an anatomy lecture to a group of individuals. Mrs Baillie was the wife of Dr Matthew Baillie, Hunter’s nephew and heir. While living in London, Hunter built up a superb library and collection of anatomical preparations, medals, prints and natural history specimens, the vast majority of which were posthumously donated (at Hunter’s bequest) to the University of Glasgow, as the foundation of the[...]