Programs & Exhibitions


Current Exhibition Future Exhibitions Past Exhibitions  

The Lewis Walpole Library draws from its own collection of prints, drawings, and paintings along with manuscripts, books, and other printed texts, to mount several rotating exhibitions in Farmington each year.

The exhibitions are free and open to the public during gallery hours: Wednesdays, 2 - 4:30 p.m. These exhibitions may also be viewed during tours of the Library by appointment. Please call 860-677-2140 for more information.

The Library has also exhibited materials in New Haven over the years. Most recently, dozens of items from the collection were included in the exhibition "Horace Walpole's Strawberry Hill," organized by the Lewis Walpole Library, the Yale Center for British Art, and the Victoria and Albert Museum. The exhibition was on view October 15, 2009 - January 3, 2010, at the Yale Center for British Art before moving to London to the Victoria and Albert Museum.

Current Exhibition

Fall 2014 - Spring 2015


Henry R. Cocok after William Blake and Michele Benedetti. The Skinning of the Aboma Snake. Indian Female of the Arrowauka Nation.




Prospects of Empire: Slavery and Ecology in Eighteenth-Century Atlantic Britain

November 17, 2014 - May 1, 2015

Curated by Heather V. Vermeulen
Doctoral Candidate in African American Studies and American Studies, Yale University


Hazel V. Carby
Charles C. & Dorathea S. Dilley Professor of African American Studies and Professor of American Studies, Yale University

“Prospects of Empire: Slavery and Ecology in Eighteenth-Century Atlantic Britain” explores the notion of empire’s “prospects”—its gaze upon bodies and landscapes, its speculations and desires, its endeavors to capitalize upon seized land and labor, as well as its failures to manage enslaved persons and unruly colonial ecologies. It reads latent anxieties in the policing of bodies and borders, both in the colonies and in the metropole, and examines the forces that empire mustered to curtail perceived threats to its regimes of power and knowledge. In addition to the focus on material from the long eighteenth century, the exhibition features a selection of four lithographs from Joscelyn Gardner’s series Creole Portraits III: “bringing down the flowers” (2009-11), a recent joint acquisition by the Yale Center for British Art and the Yale University Art Gallery. Gardner’s work mines the eighteenth-century Jamaica archive of white English immigrant, overseer, slaveowner, and pen-keeper Thomas Thistlewood, one of whose diaries is on loan from the Beinecke.

On 9-10 December there was a workshop for graduate students held in connection with this exhibition and the Figures of Empire exhibition at the Yale Center for British Art. For details click here.

On 15 April there will be an evening talk by curator Heather Vermeulen from 7-9 p.m. at the LWL. Registration is required.

{back to top}

Future Exhibitions

Fall 2015


Bawdy Bodies: Satires of Unruly Women

Curated by Hope Saska
Assessment Specialist, Arts and Languages, Education Testing Services


Cynthia Roman
Curator of Prints, Drawings, and Paintings, the Lewis Walpole Library

Opens 24 September 2015


{back to top}

Past Exhibitions

Click here to view a listing of past Library exhibitions, some with links to further information.