The Paper Museum: the Curious Eye of Cassiano dal Pozzo

An unquenchable curiosity and desire to document the world around him drove the Italian patron Cassiano dal Pozzo (1588 – 1657) to assemble his ‘Paper Museum’ – a spectacular collection of around 10,000 drawings, watercolours and prints.

It covered antiquities, architecture, zoology, botany and geology, social customs and ceremonies, costumes, portraits, topography and military maps. The collection was – before the invention of photography – one of the most impressive visual records of antiquities and natural history. The Paper Museum was acquired by George III in 1762, and is now part of the Royal Collection.

This exhibition – the second in an annual collaboration between the Barber and Royal Collection Trust – is co-curated by MA Art History and Curating students, and will explore a selection of these works on paper. It is enhanced by rare books and geological specimens from the University’s Cadbury Research Library and the Lapworth Museum respectively.

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