Re-interpreting our history and collections through a diversity of voices and perspectives

Launched in 2021, Black Chiswick through History is an ongoing community project researching the black presence at Chiswick House & Gardens. Working with three groups of community partners from Chiswick School, Hogarth Youth and Community Centre and Hounslow Action for Youth, we are drawing out stories of people, places and experiences, connecting to themes of empire and global and local connections.

Hounslow Action for Youth, image by Gregor Petrikovic

This research has helped us to understand and interpret Chiswick House through a diversity of voices and perspectives. Reflecting their own diverse experiences and background, the young people have produced a series of thoughtful responses to our history and collections and are enriching the interpretation for all our visitors.

In 2022, young people from Chiswick School created a series of short videos exploring the painting of the Moroccan Ambassador, the Bust of Caracalla, the Medici Vases and the Chiswick Sphinx sculpture all found in our collection. The group from Hogarth Youth and Community Centre produced a detailed collage, making visible the people of colour present within the house, significant people of colour within our shared history, and their own personal connections to Chiswick.

What’s new for 2023?

This year our groups explored the theme ‘300 years of built and natural design’ with the support of artist-practitioners Rachel Long and Ayesha Weekes and researcher Nadege Forde-Vidal. The resulting works are on display in the House and can be viewed Thursday-Sunday until 1 October. Included with a Chiswick House & Kitchen Garden ticket.

Notes from a Paradise Garden

A Black Chiswick through History Project with Hounslow Action for Youth (HAY) and Rachel Long.

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Chiswick House and its silks

A Black Chiswick through History Project with Chiswick School.


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Putting the colour back into Chiswick House

A Black Chiswick through History Project with Hogarth Youth and Community Centre and Ayesha Weekes

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