Siân Walters, MA (Cantab)
Siân Walters lectures for the National Gallery, NADFAS and Surrey University, as well as many art societies and colleges in and around London. Having graduated from Cambridge University, Siân spent four years in Italy and France where she worked for the Peggy Guggenheim Museum and the eminent scholar H.C. Robbins Landon. As well as running Art History in Focus, she spends much of the year lecturing abroad, particularly in Italy and Spain, and is well known for her enthusiastic, structured yet informal approach. Siân is delighted to have been nominated by an independent travel company in 2008 and 2009 for the Daily Telegraph’s Best Guide Award.
Siân’s specialist areas are 15th and 16th century Italian painting, Spanish Art and Architecture, and the relationship between Dance and Art (she is an honorary advisor to the Nonsuch Historical Dance Society). She has given many lectures on this subject for the National Gallery, including a number of events in conjunction with the gallery's “Renaissance Siena”, “Sacred Made Real”, and “Canaletto and his Rivals” exhibitions. A special lecture in conjunction with the recent Leonardo da Vinci exhibition was also recently commissioned by the gallery, as one of a small number of Friday evening talks given talks by Leonardo specialists and academics.
Siân studied music as well as art history: she was awarded a choral exhibition at Cambridge University and a 1st for her dissertation on the paintings of the composer Arnold Schoenberg, and has appeared in a film about Mozart’s Clarinet Concerto. She often arranges art tours which have a musical element, such as an evening at the opera, tickets to a concert or a visit focusing on the musical heritage of a city. In 2007 Sian was invited to give the prestigious annual T Rowland Hughes Lecture at the University of Wales, which in recent years has been given by leading figures in the art world such as Neil Macgregor, Sir Roy Strong and Sir Kyffin Williams.
For a list of sample lecture titles, study days and courses, please click here.
Check the National Gallery website and your local NADFAS branch for up-and-coming public lectures by Siân.
Click here to listen to Siân interviewed about angels in art for the National Gallery podcast
Click here to see Siân leading a tour on the new National Gallery website
Art History in Focus also draws on the knowledge and expertise of a number of distinguished guest and visiting lecturers, as well as curators and academics who often join us for study days and tours. Here are a few of the lecturers who have worked with us recently or who will be doing so soon:
Jacqui Ansell studied at the Courtauld Institute, specialising in the history of costume. Since 1992 Jacqui has used this wider knowledge of cultural history to tutor and write for the Open University and she also lectures for the National Gallery and Christie’s, tutoring undergraduates in the fine and decorative arts.
Dr Xavier Bray
Dr. Xavier Bray was Assistant Curator of 17th and 18th Century European paintings at the National Gallery and is now chief curator at the Dulwich Picture Gallery. In 2009 he curated the exhibition The Sacred Made Real: Spanish Painting and Sculpture 1600-1700 which received unanimous praise for its profound and sensitive examination of a subject which was previously unfamiliar to British audiences.
Raymond Chai is an eminent ballet master and choreographer. He has been guest teacher for many professional companies including Matthew Bourne's New Adventures, Richard Alston Dance Company, English National Ballet and Rambert Dance Company. He is Ballet Lecturer for the London Contemporary Dance School and Ballet Master for Ballet Black.
Martin Clayton is Senior Curator of Prints and Drawings at the Royal Collection, and curator of 'Leonardo da Vinci: Anatomist' which took place at the Queen's Gallery in 2012
Andrew Graham Dixon
Andrew Graham-Dixon is one of the leading art critics and presenters of arts television in the English-speaking world. He has presented numerous landmark series on art for the BBC, including the acclaimed A History of British Art, Renaissance and Art of Eternity, as well as numerous individual documentaries on art and artists. For more than twenty years he has published a weekly column on art, first in the Independent and, more recently, in the Sunday Telegraph. He has also written a number of acclaimed books, on subjects ranging from medieval painting and sculpture to the art of the present.
Dr Andrew Duncan
Andrew Duncan graduated with a PhD in history from Oxford University and has for many years worked as an independent historian and guide. He has written a number of London guidebooks, amongst other publications, and leads regular walking tours in the capital as well as further afield. An expert on the cities of Verona and Bologna, Andrew has tailor-made a number of city and country walks for Art History in Focus Tours.
Dr Deborah Howard
Deborah Howard is Professor of Architectural History in the Faculty of Architecture and a Fellow of St John's College, Cambridge. Her principal research interests are the art and architecture of Venice and the Veneto; music and architecture in the Renaissance; and the relationship between Italy and the Eastern Mediterranean. Her latest book, Sound and Space in Renaissance Venice: Architecture, Music, Acoustics, was published by Yale University Press in 2009. She was elected a Fellow of the British Academy in 2010.
Helen is the Assistant Curator of Modern British Art at Tate Britain and has worked on a number of exhibitions including Picasso and Modern British Art.
Jane da Mosto
Jane is an environmental scientist and international consultant on sustainable development. Since 2001, she has been working with Venice in Peril and Cambridge University to develop an independent platform for examining scientific information concerning the current state and future of Venice. In 2004 she published The Science of Saving Venice.
Dr Cetty Muscolini
Dr Muscolini is an eminent art historian and author, and the Director of the Museo Nazionale di Ravenna.
Leslie Primo studied at Birkbeck College and is a highly popular lecturer and tutor at the National Gallery, Reading University, the National Portrait Gallery and the City Literary and Bishopsgate Institutes in London, specialising in early Medieval and Renaissance art.
Patrick O'Sullivan is Head of Art Handling at the National Gallery, where he has worked since 2005.
David Wertheim is one of the world's leading experts on Japanese prints, and director of the Japanese Gallery in London.