Saturday 7th October 2023 (11:45 am)


Emma Sandys: The Drama of Womanhood. Lecture to be given by Dr. Serena Trowbridge. Lecture starts at 11:45 am (GMT).

Members, friends, and the general public are invited to the annual General Meeting and Founder's Day Lecture of the Pre-Raphaelite Society, to be held on Saturday, 7th October 2023, in the Sir Arthur Sullivan Hall at the Bimingham and Midland Institute, Margaret Street, Birmingham B3 3BS.

The Annual General Meeting will begin at 10:30 am, followed at 11:45 by an illustrated lecture to be presented by Dr. Serena Trowbridge on "Emma Sandys: The Drama of Womanhood."

Emma, sister of the more famous Frederick, is rarely the focus of study, but her portraits of women from literature, myth and history offer a way into considering her approach to Pre-Raphaelite painting. The women Sandys depicted seem to resist a conventional interpretation, their eye evading the viewer not through modesty but disinterest or preoccupation, their expressions often enigmatic or even challenging. In many of her paintings, Sandys offers covert clues to her women’s identity (an issue often further confused by the different titles used for the works), using symbolism, setting and facial expression. This illustrated lecture offers new readings of some of her paintings, and a look at some rarely-seen works by Sandys.

Dr. Serena Trowbridge is Chair of the Pre-Raphaelite Society, Senior Vice-President of the Birmingham and Midland Institute and Reader in Victorian Literature at Birmingham City University. She has published widely on Pre-Raphaelite art and literature, and is currently working on Forgotten Women Pre-Raphaelites (University of Delaware, 2024) and Pre-Raphaelite Women’s Writing (Routledge, 2025).

Friends and members of the public are welcome. Admission is FREE. Please sign up for the AGM and Founders Day Lecture at: Donations to The Pre-Raphaelite Society will be gratefully received.

Created 27 August 2023