Ayla Lepine and Caroline Campbell in conversation

Spring Term, sees the return of the Royal Drawing School series of Creative Conversations; online dialogues between artists, curators and writers. Curated by Dr Claudia Tobin, lectures are held Wednesday evenings live on Zoom. 

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Ayla Lepine and Caroline Campbell's dialogue will focus on the relationships between theology and the arts in the National Gallery, with emphasis on two highly celebrated Italian works of art from different periods: Piero della Francesca’s The Baptism of Christ (after 1437) and Orazio Gentileschi’s The Finding of Moses (early 1630s). They will be exploring narratives and techniques in relation to form and detail as well as meanings and identities. Piero and Orazio’s different approaches and visual interpretations reveal unique responses to two pivotal moments in scripture, and they provide a compelling opportunity to stimulate new considerations regarding holiness and the sacred.   

Ayla Lepine and Caroline Campbell in conversation
Orazio Gentileschi, The Finding of Moses, early 1630s, National Gallery, NG6684

Ayla Lepine is the Howard and Roberta Ahmanson Fellow in Art and Religion at the National Gallery. Her MA and PhD at the Courtauld Institute of Art focused on modern medievalism and the Gothic Revival. She has held postdoctoral fellowships at the Courtauld and Yale’s Institute of Sacred Music, and was Lecturer and Fellow in Art History at the University of Essex. With an academic background in both art history and theology, her publications include articles in the Sculpture Journal, British Art Studies, and Architectural History as well as co-edited books on revivalism and modern monastic visual culture. She is a trustee of the UK charity Art and Christianity. Her current projects at the National Gallery include an exhibition with nine regional museums titled ‘Fruits of the Spirit’, and the development of new networks for curators and theologians on the theme of ‘crossing borders’ in relation to Orazio Gentileschi’s The Finding of Moses

Caroline Campbell is Director of Collections and Research at the National Gallery, where she has overall responsibility for the Gallery’s paintings and those who care for and research them.  Born and educated in Belfast, Caroline studied at University College, Oxford and The Courtauld Institute of Art, before holding curatorial positions at the Ashmolean Museum, Oxford, The Courtauld Gallery and the National Gallery. She’s a Trustee of City & Guilds of London Art School and the Association for Art History.   

Caroline has written on and curated art from the Middle Ages to the 21st century but she has a particular love for the art of Renaissance Italy, which has been the focus of most of her publications.  Her current projects include an exhibition on Duccio and 14th-century Siena, and how best to celebrate the National Gallery’s 200th birthday in 2024. 

Cover image: Orazio Gentileschi, The Finding of Moses, early 1630s, National Gallery, NG6684