During a recent engagement project the, now slightly barren, Breakfast Room proved a surprising source of inspiration.
In preparation for Osterley’s forthcoming exhibition – The Trappings of Trade: A domestic story of the East India Company – members of the local community were invited to take part in a day exploring Osterley’s links with the East. The event, which was co-hosted by University College London and the National Trust, filmed participants’ interactions with Osterley’s objects and also invited them to bring along their own to discuss. Photographic portraits were taken and will be displayed in the exhibition alongside the wider display on the Child family directors, Company ships and the transformation of the House.
The Breakfast Room, whilst currently empty, provoked discussion on the development of rooms in the House and the way in which they were transformed, not only by Robert Adam but as a result of the commercial exploits of the people who inhabited them. The Breakfast Room also formed the back-drop for one of the most arresting of the portrait shots.
The Trappings of Trade runs from 27 July – 3 November at OsterleyPark and House.
If you would like to learn more about the East India Company at Home, 1757-1857 project then visit the Think Piece section of the project website: