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5 October 2011

See (Now That Would Be) Telling at Dr Johnson's House

Your author has been looking for a fresh reason to feature Dr Johnson's House for some time, and a great opportunity came along earlier this week when he volunteered to spend an evening serving drinks at the launch of a new exhibition in the famous garrett at the top of the house where Johnson formulated his dictionary.

The project marks Black History Month and is based on the life of Francis Barber, the freed Jamaican slave, former sailor and manservant who became heir to Dr Samuel Johnson. Artist Hayley Lock and writer Hallie Ruben have worked with curator Catherine Hemelryk to create imagined artefacts and a fictional story around this enigmatic character in a space where Barber himself worked and lived.

It's interesting stuff, and regular readers and listeners to the recent Art on Air London Essentials Podcast will not be surprised to hear that your author is pleased to see any new work based around Johnson's story.

The exhibition is free with entry to the house, which costs £4.50. For more information, see http://www.drjohnsonshouse.org/events.htm#telling

1 comment:

  1. I thought Dr Johnson's house in Gough Square was terrific, well located, spacious and airy. Assuming the house is largely as it was, it would have been quite a pleasure to live there.

    But Johnson's life seemed to be blighted by sadness - careerwise, sexually, his looks, his physical health, his speech and every other thing. I wonder if he was happier than I give him credit for.