ANN: Collecting Spanish Decorative Arts in Britain and Spain, online seminar (Collecting and Display, 20 Mar 2023; 8pm London GMT)

Collecting and Display

Coleccionismo de artes decorativas españolas en Gran Bretaña y España / Collecting Spanish Decorative Arts in Britain and Spain (Madrid: Polifemo, 2022) examines the collecting of Spanish decorative arts between about 1850 and 1945, from both British and Spanish perspectives. It focuses on the period in which museums and private collectors in both countries valued and acquired different types of objects from Spain, such as ivory caskets, silk textiles, carpets, lustreware ceramics, furniture, jewellery and silverware. The essays reveal similarities and differences in approach in Britain and Spain, as well as the key figures involved and the differing national contexts in which their activities took place.

Dr Ana Cabrera Lafuente, the co-editor of the book, will highlight the role played by specific museums, such as the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, and by local, national and international exhibitions of the decorative arts, in disseminating knowledge about Spanish objects, historical and contemporary. In her talk, Dr Cabrera will also focus on the significant role of textiles in the history of taste and collecting in this period.

Ana Cabrera Lafuente has been a Spanish museum curator since 2001, with wide experience in historical textiles and historical dress/fashion. She has worked in different museums from 2001 to 2020, including The National Museum of Decorative Arts and Fashion Museum, both in Madrid. She was awarded a Marie S.-Curie Fellowship, developing the project Interwoven at the Victoria and Albert Museum, London, between 2016 to 2018, after her Ph.D. in Late Antiquity and early medieval textiles from the Egypt at the Museu de Disseny (Barcelona). She has been a member of several research projects related to historical textiles, museums, and cultural heritage. She is co-editor of Silk: Fibre, Fabric and Fashion (2020) and Collecting Spain: Collecting Spanish Decorative Arts in Britain and Spain (2021) and has curated ¡Extra, Moda! (2019) with Maria Prego and Tejidos y alfombras del Museo de La Alhambra (1997).


Exceptionally, as our speaker is unable to travel to London, the seminar will take place on Zoom only.

Please note: you need to register by Sunday evening.

To attend online please register with the Institute of Historical Research, Collecting and Display:

A link will be sent to you on the day. If it does not arrive by midday please email to let us know and we will send it again.

Susan Bracken / Andrea M. Gáldy / Adriana Turpin