October 14 (Friday) - 23 (Sunday)
Discover a fuller, richer history of London life in the eighteenth century, through the newly uncovered stories of children of colour in the care of the Foundling Hospital. Follow the
Discover a fuller, richer history of London life in the eighteenth century, through the newly uncovered stories of children of colour in the care of the Foundling Hospital. Follow the life stories of more than a dozen children for a new perspective on the world of the eighteenth century world and of today.
As well as tracing the lives of the children, the exhibition explores their parents’ circumstances and what brought their mothers to the Foundling Hospital. People of colour, both free and enslaved, could be found throughout eighteenth-century Britain, but especially in London. Their presence was closely tied to Britain’s colonisation in the Caribbean and East Indies. Through the admission process the mothers came into contact with the Hospital’s Governors, and the exhibition also looks at their connections to colonial Britain and its immense financial rewards, showing how the threads of empire connected within the life of the institution.
There are no portraits of these children, and we have found them only through fleeting and tantalising references in the archive. Works by contemporary artists which reflect some part of their stories give the children a physical presence throughout the exhibition, and create an imaginative link between past and present.
Open: Tuesday – Saturday 10am – 5pm; Sunday 11am – 5pm (closed Monday)
Admission includes all collections and exhibitions
Adult £10.50* / £9.50
Concessions £8.25* / £7.50
FREE for 21 & under, Foundling Friends & National Art Pass holders
* Ticket price includes Gift Aid