John Everett Millais, “The Blind Girl” (detail), 1856, oil on canvas (Presented by the Rt. Hon. William Kendrick, 1892, courtesy American Federation of Arts, © Birmingham Museums Trust)

In the second half of the nineteenth century, three generations of young rebellious artists and designers revolutionized the visual arts in Britain and challenged the new industrial world around them. The Pre-Raphaelite Brotherhood, William Morris and his associates, and the champions of the Arts and Crafts movement offered a radical artistic and social vision that found inspiration in the preindustrial past and decisively influenced visual culture in Britain and beyond.

Victorian Radicals: From the Pre-Raphaelites to the Arts and Crafts Movement brings together approximately 145 works of art — many never shown outside the UK — to illuminate this most dynamic period of British art in an exhibition of unparalleled historical and visual richness. Showcasing the work of Ford Madox Brown, Edward Burne-Jones, William Holman Hunt, John Everett Millais, William Morris, Dante Gabriel Rossetti, and Elizabeth Siddall, among others, this display represents the spectrum of avant-garde practices of the Victorian period. These artists’ attention to detail, use of vibrant colors, and engagement with both literary themes and contemporary life will be illustrated through a selection of paintings, drawings, and watercolors presented alongside superb examples of decorative art.

Victorian Radicals is organized by the American Federation of Arts and Birmingham Museums Trust. This exhibition is supported by a grant from the National Endowment for the Arts. Additional funding is provided by Clare McKeon and the Dr. Lee MacCormick Edwards Charitable Foundation.

The exhibition is on view at the Yale Center for British Art through May 10, 2020. Admission is free.

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Victorian Radicals: From the Pre-Raphaelites to the Arts and Crafts Movement continues at the Yale Center for British Art (1080 Chapel Street, New Haven, CT) through May 10. The exhibition is curated by Tim Barringer, Paul Mellon Professor of the History of Art at Yale University; Martin Ellis, independent curator; and Victoria Osborne at Birmingham Museums Trust. The organizing curator at the Yale Center for British Art is Courtney Skipton Long, Acting Assistant Curator of Prints and Drawings.

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