P. Barlow and C. Trodd eds., Governing Cultures: Art Institutions in Victorian London (Aldershot, 2000)
London in the 19 saw the founding of the National Gallery, the National Portrait Gallery, the Victoria and Albert Museum and the Whitechapel Art Gallery. Other, less permanent organizations also flourished, among them the British Institution, watercolour societies and the Society of Female Artists. In this work, 11 scholars, experts on the individual institutions, analyze their complex histories to investigate such issues as: how did they generate and redesign their publics ?; what identities did they create ?; what practice of art making, connoisseurship and spectatorship did they enshrine ? These reports elucidate the values associated with the key institutions and describe the responses and adaptation over time to major cultural developments – new movements, political change and the development of the Empire. As a whole the volume offers an account of the interconnections between these key institutions. Challenging conventional readings of the subject, the introduction, written by the editors, offers a definition of public art during the Victorian period.