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Reviewing the Parliamentary Art Collection: new updates published

In September 2020 the Speaker’s Advisory Committee on Works of Art began a review into the Parliamentary Art Collection, supporting its aim for the collection to become more representative of diversity. Every quarter since then, we have published an updated list of the works of art in the Collection which relate to the transatlantic slave trade. Our most recent set of data is now available to view.

This document has been developed by crosschecking objects in our Collection against rigorous academic research from institutions such as University College London and Historic England. This research is ongoing, and as such this is the fourth version of the document.

The review will continue to publish updated versions of this list quarterly, as new works are discovered through additional research.

You can view the latest document on the Speaker’s Advisory Committee on Works of Art webpage – ‘Reviewing and Updating the Parliamentary Art Collection’

About the Collection review

The Parliamentary Art Collection illustrates and documents the history and work of Parliament, and, therefore, includes works featuring 17th, 18th and 19th century parliamentarians. Many of these individuals, as wealthy landowners and businessmen, were often directly involved in, and/or profited from, slavery and the slave trade or whose families did so. The Collection also includes a number of works which depict abolitionists and their fight against slavery.

In common with the approach being taken by a number of museums, art galleries and other large collections in recent months, the intention is to consider the current approach to managing the Collection and how to broaden its diversity and inclusion.

You can read more about the Committee’s approach to reviewing the collection, and how it plans to broaden diversity and inclusion, here.

Further reading

Read more about the history of the transatlantic slave trade and slavery through items from the Parliamentary Art Collection.

August 11, 2021