2020 Berger Prize - watch the video below

The life and work of Thomas Gainsborough (1727 – 1788) was explored during a free, online event celebrating  Thomas Gainsborough. The Portraits, Fancy Pictures and Copies after Old Masters by Hugh Belsey winning the 18th annual William MB Berger Prize for British Art History.

The event was broadcast live from Lowell Libson and Jonny Yarker Gallery in London. Hosted by Jonny Yarker, the event centred on an ‘in conversation’ between Professor Robin Simon, Editor of The British Art Journal, and Hugh Belsey.

Contributors included Mark Bills (Director of Gainsborough’s House) with an update on its ongoing transformation into a major regional centre.
There was an opportunity for viewers to ask questions.
The annual prize created to recognize excellence in the field of British art history was created in 2001 by the Berger Collection Educational Trust (BCET) and The British Art Journal, in honour of the late American collector and patron William MB Berger. Since its inception, the Berger Prize has come to be recognized as the most respected in the field.
Usually the winner is announced at an event in London during December, but the global pandemic means that is not possible in 2020, and so this year the Berger Prize has gone online.
Katherine MB Berger, daughter of William MB Berger and Trustee of the Berger Collection Educational Trust, said before the event,

Although it is disappointing we cannot hold a physical prizegiving this year, our online event means we can take a much deeper look at our winning title and share this experience with anyone globally. It’s an exciting chance to connect even more people with the Berger Prize and the work of Gainsborough.

BAJ 4-2cover?

The British Art Journal was launched at a reception given at the Thomas Coram Foundation (now the Foundling Museum), 40 Brunswick Square WC1 on 1 July 1999. Two issues were published in the first year, and three issues have been published every year since.

The British Art Journal publishes original research on British art of all periods, and actively encourages the work of younger scholars. Articles cover most fields of art-historical research, including painting and the graphic arts, books and publishing, sculpture, architecture, the decorative arts, and the history of dress.
Submissions are invited from scholars.
Main articles are usually 3,000 – 7,500 words, but it is a policy of the journal to consider longer articles up to 20,000 words; shorter articles up to 3,000 words.
Suggestions for reviews of books and exhibitions are welcomed. 
Contact the Editor, 
The British Art Journal, 
46 Grove Lane, 
email: editor@britishartjournal.co.uk

All research articles are refereed.



St Cecilia (BJ 160) by Sir Edward Burne-Jones, made by Morris & Co, c1900.
Stained and painted glass, 213.5 x 75.5 cm. Princeton University Art Museum,
museum purchase, Surdna Fund (y1974-84). Photo Princeton University Art Museum
See article by Anne Anderson, on pp72-82 and this issues Featured Article



2 | Gainsborough’s House, Sudbury
A major new art centre


3 | Fintan Cullen
Ireland and British portraiture
The case of Mansergh St George

8 | William Hauptman 
Encountering European painting in London
The Lichfield House Exhibition of 1851 and its forerunners. Part I

32 | Susan Sloman 
The ‘infant’ drawings of Sir Thomas Lawrence (1769–1830)

42 | Jonathan Foyle and Peter N Lindfield
A forger’s folly? 
The productions of George Shaw (1810–76) for Chetham’s Library, Manchester

51 | Simon Spier
Between Fine Art and Design

York School of Design, 1842–1855

58 | Patricia R Andrew 
In the frame?
The funeral parson in A Harlot’s Progress by William Hogarth (1697–1764)

62 | Allister Neher
John Bell (1763–1820)
Anatomist and art theorist

72 | Anne Anderson
Dearman Birchall’s House Beautiful
The St Cecilia windows for Bowden Hall, a collaboration between Morris & Co and Aldam Heaton

83 | David Greenwood
Dearman bookplates and bonding
An early woodcut by Georgie Gaskin (1866–1934)


86 | Alexander Clayton-Payne
The re-emergence of a painting by Benjamin West (1738–1820)


93 | Martin Hopkinson 
George Rawson
Charles Rennie Mackintosh in Italy


95 | ­ Robin Simon
Ekaterina Karavaeva
Power, Diplomacy and Culture at the Court of Henry VIII


95 | RB Watson
 ‘Hubert Arthur Finney: Out of the Shadows’
The Lightbox, Woking, 9 January–21 March 2021