Two stunning special exhibitions kick off 'The Year of Pre-Raphaelites'

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Two stunning special exhibitions kick off 'The Year of Pre-Raphaelites'
Evelyn De Morgan (1855 –1919), The Gilded Cage, c. 1900. Oil on canvas. © De Morgan Collection, courtesy of the De Morgan Foundation.

WILMINGTON, DE.- The Delaware Art Museum celebrates British Pre-Raphaelite art with two new exhibitions this fall. A Marriage of Arts & Crafts: Evelyn & William De Morgan makes its American debut at DelArt on October 22. The exhibition showcases Evelyn De Morgan’s symbolic Pre-Raphaelite paintings and her husband William’s Arts & Crafts-style ceramics. Recently opened, Forgotten Pre-Raphaelites displays artworks from DelArt’s collection rarely on view. A new art history course, lectures, tours, and a Member’s Preview Party are planned during the exhibitions’ run.

A Marriage of Arts and Crafts: Evelyn and William De Morgan is the first retrospective exhibition of Arts and Crafts pottery maker William De Morgan (1839-1917) and Pre-Raphaelite painter Evelyn De Morgan (1855-1919). As a power couple in Victorian England, the artists moved in influential cultural circles, shared an interest in spiritualism, and engaged with social issues of their day. Yet both artists have gone relatively unrecognized until now. This visually stunning exhibition brings together William’s brilliantly colored tiles, pots, and plates and Evelyn’s richly symbolic paintings.

The De Morgans weren’t the only artists in the Pre-Raphaelite circle who didn’t get their due. Forgotten Pre-Raphaelites displays over forty works by overlooked artists who experimented with Pre-Raphaelite themes and techniques, including art by the American Pre-Raphaelites and work by women artists. The Delaware Art Museum’s Pre-Raphaelite collection is the most comprehensive outside of the United Kingdom.

“This fall’s special exhibitions are an opportunity for visitors to fall in love with artists they might not yet know,” says Executive Director Molly Giordano. “We’re calling this The Year of Pre-Raphaelites, and we can’t wait to share the masterpieces, exhibitions, and educational programs celebrating this rich period of art history.”

Guided special exhibition tours are available weekly on Saturday afternoons. Dr. Margaretta Frederick, Delaware Art Museum’s Curator Emerita, will give a lecture on the closing day of the exhibition, February 19 at 2 p.m. Dr. Frederick also edited the show’s catalogue, which is for sale in the Museum Store and at

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