A major exhibition of portraits showing the people who lived in and influenced Dorset during the eighteenth-century.
Most of the important portrait artists of the eighteenth century, including Sir Joshua Reynolds, George Romney, Thomas Gainsborough and Allan Ramsay are represented. Three of the painters featured in the exhibition, Sir James Thornhill, Giles Hussey and Thomas Beach were all born in Dorset.The exhibition will show that Dorset was not an isolated rural county, but was aware of the latest thinking, ideas and intellectual developments coming out of London. This included rural centres such as Blandford Forum, where a circle of natural philosophers were based. They in turn returned to the capital with their local discourses in natural philosophy, antiquarianism and archaeology.