Castles, Churches and Imperial Landscapes: Books published in association with the Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art

Paul Mellon Centre Library

Paul Mellon Centre Library

For many years Yale University Press have published high-quality art books in association with the Paul Mellon Centre. Here we take a look at the Centre itself, as well as a selection of books in this collection.

The Paul Mellon Centre for Studies in British Art has always had strong links with Yale University, and not only because it is located at 16 Bedford Square directly opposite our Yale University Press’s London office. The Centre itself was founded thanks to a grant from the American philanthropist Paul Mellon to Yale University, and was conceived as the sister institution to the Yale Center for British Art (located on the Yale campus in New Haven). There is certainly plenty to see…

The Library: The Paul Mellon Centre houses a library of 14,000 books on British painting, sculpture, drawing, prints, architecture and garden history from the sixteenth to the mid-twentieth century, as well as eighteenth-century British decorative art.

The Archive:  The Centre’s archives mainly consist of the research papers of art historians, many of whom were pioneers in the formation of this discipline. The focus is the study of seventeenth and eighteenth-century British art, although the range extends from the sixteenth to nineteenth century and includes papers on foreign artists in England.

The Photo Archive: The photographic archive contains over 80,000 reference photographs of British paintings, decorative painting, sculpture, drawings and prints covering the period 1500-1900, with particular emphasis on the eighteenth century.

As well as providing teaching in London for American students, the Centre supports a thriving publication programme through Yale University Press. Take a look at a selection of recently published books below…

English CastleThe English Castle: 1066-1650
by John Goodall

This compellingly written and lavishly illustrated volume explores the architecture of England’s castles over six centuries. It brings to life their history and describes the changing role of these buildings in warfare, politics, domestic living, and governance.


The Synagogues of Britain and Ireland: An Architectural and Social History
by Sharman Kadish

This striking publication explores the synagogue in Britain and Ireland from the mid-17th century to today and examines the relationship between architectural style and minority identity in British society.

Imperial LandscapesImperial Landscapes: Britain’s Global Visual Culture, 1745-1820
by John E. Crowley

In response to conquests in mid-18th-century wars, Britons developed a keen interest in how their colonies actually looked. Artistic representations of these faraway places, claiming topographic accuracy from being ‘drawn on the spot’, became increasingly frequent as the British Empire extended its reach during and after the Seven Years’ War. This is the first book to examine the country’s early imperial landscape art from a broad comparative perspective.

18th Century ChurchThe Eighteenth-century Church in Britain
by Terry Friedman

This ambitious and generously illustrated study is an in-depth account of the architectural character of a vast range of ecclesiastical buildings, including the Anglican parish churches, medieval cathedrals repaired and modified during the period, Dissenting and Catholic chapels (as well as town-house, country-house, college and hospital chapels) and mausoleums.

Vauxhall GardensVauxhall Gardens: A History (published this month)
by David E. Coke, Alan Borg

Vauxhall Gardens was the foremost pleasure garden of eighteenth- and nineteenth-century London. This comprehensive and prolifically illustrated account makes a major contribution to the study of London entertainments, culture, class and ideology, and reveals the teeming life, the spectacular art and the ever-present music of Vauxhall in fascinating detail.

The books are available now from Yale University Press.

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