New exhibition on Mary Beale features three works on public view for the first time

Self Portrait of Mary Beale with Her Husband and Son, 1663–1664. © Museum of the Home

Fruit of Friendship: Portraits by Mary Beale opened at Philip Mould & Company in London on Thursday 25 April 2024.

Mary Beale (1633-1699) was one of Britain’s first professional woman artists. This exhibition will feature twenty-five of her works from public and private collections. The exhibition will span her entire career and include self-portraits, portraits of her family and friends, and formal commissions.

The exhibition will also shed light on Beale’s studio practice and highlight its radical reversal of conventional gender roles for the period. Beale’s husband Charles dedicated himself to his wife’s career and supported her studio diligently by priming canvases, manufacturing pigments, and recording business in a series of notebooks. The exhibition will present three works not seen in public before, including an early re-discovered portrait of the artist’s husband and a portrait of Anne Sotheby, which will be displayed in the gallery for two weeks before it is exhibited in Tate Britain’s upcoming exhibition Now You See Us: Women Artists in Britain, 1520–1920.

The exhibition will be complemented by an openly available online catalogue. In anticipation of a comprehensive printed publication scheduled for Summer 2024, this online resource will be an accessible guide to her works and their significance.

The exhibition runs until 19th July 2024 and further information can be found here.

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