Capturing the Brontes

October 4 - December 31 2013

Capturing the Brontes was an imaginative, witty and informative exploration of the Brontes and the history of early photography, curated in partnership with the Mercer Art Gallery, Harrogate.

The exhibition took visitors on an alternative 'Visitorian' tour of the Bronte Parsonage Museum, to uncover some of the stranger facts and fictions surrounding the Bronte story. Charlotte Cory's photographic collages rework Victorian cartes-des-visite (a Victorian craze for photographic calling cards that were once produced in their millions). She combines these long forgotten Victorians with her own portraits of stuffed animals from museums and her own collection, recycling these dispossessed images and giving them a new lease of life. Charlotte Cory boldly created an alternative Bronte narrative for this exhibition, in which Branwell Bronte achieves his dream of studying at the Royal Academy, and Maria Branwell's shipwrecked trunk is discovered, full of wonderful things that end up prized, accessioned and properly labelled in a 'museum within a museum'. The work is playful and affectionate and full of completely new and original research.

Charlotte Cory is an artist and writer based in Greenwich, London. She joined the Bronte Society as a Life Member in 1967 at the age of 10. Best known for her 'Visitoriana' - a complete, fantastical, alternative 19th century - Charlotte Cory's artworks have been exhibited at the Royal Academy, are in the Royal Collection, and an exhibition of her Shakesperean Visitorians, Exit Pursued by a Bear, was held at the Globe Theatre in 2012. Further information on Charlotte's work can be found at

A fully illustrated exhibition catalogue 'Capturing the Brontes' is available from the Bronte Parsonage Museum.