Lillie Langtry, Model and Muse

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A Panel Discussion on GF Watts's Portrait of Lillie Langtry

Chaired by Chief Executive Officer of Mall Galleries, Clare O’Brien

The Panel:   

  • Laura Beatty, biographer of Lillie Langtry
  • Sarah Jane Moon, portrait artist
  • Dr Cicely Robinson, Chief Curator of Watts Gallery

Don't miss this panel discussion about G F Watts’s portrait of Lillie Langtry, on loan to the Royal Society of Portrait Painters (RP) Annual Exhibition, with Curator of the Watts Gallery, Dr Cicely Robinson, Langtry biographer Laura Beatty, and portrait artist Sarah Jane Moon.

George Frederic Watts was an early member of the Royal Society of Portrait Painters and his portrait of actress, producer and socialite Lille Langtry was originally exhibited with the Society in 1892. Now part of the Watts Gallery collection, it is returning to the RP for this exhibition in the lead up to the Society exhibiting at Watts Gallery early next year.

Langtry's beauty made her a popular actress in the 1880s and she became a theatre producer and manager. She is also famous for being the mistress of  Edward VII.

Chaired by Clare O'Brien, Chief Executive Officer of Mall Galleries, Dr Cicely Robinson will discuss Watts, Langtry, and women's changing roles and identity with Langtry's biographer Laura Beatty and Sarah Jane Moon, a portrait painter who focuses on representations of gender in her work.

The panel will consider questions around the way women are portrayed then and now, the male gaze, the changing nature of women in theatrical, fashion and celebrity circles, the issues currently being debated around the manipulation and abuse of women, the 'Me Too' campaign in Hollywood and the business of who is in control.

How can Lillie be seen in this context? Was she in control of her image or was she exploited?