Research into the collection
This webpage summarises some of the past, current and ongoing research which focuses on exploring, unpicking and challenging colonial legacies in relation to the Barber collections.
The research can include, but is not limited to, enquiries into the representation of people of colour within the compositions and subject matter of historic European art, the role of the artist and the patron in reinforcing colonial assumptions and stereotypes, the provenance, or ownership history, of an individual work of art and the source of a collector’s wealth.
This research is varied but has the overarching purpose of creating and sharing a more holistic and transparent understanding of the works of art in the Barber collection - why they were made and how they were received in their own time, and how they can be approached today to uncover and learn from devastating histories and marginalised perspectives?
Through this research, we aim to offer revised interpretation and learning programmes, narratives and new approaches that will be more inclusive for all our visitors.
Read the Barber's Due Diligence Policy for Loans.
Looking again at a Collections highlight
Who is the Black boy who appears so prominently in Murillo's The Marriage Feast at Cana?
This research project aims to address the representation, possible identities and lived experiences of the boy, whose presence has hardly been discussed in previous art historical studies.