The Brill Collection originally consisted of a series of 74 topographical watercolour and pen and wash paintings which were commissioned between 1955 and 1971 to record through art the changing landscape of the borough.
The scheme, which had the support of Kingston Rotary Club, was the idea of Reginald Brill, head of the former Kingston School of Art and many of the paintings were by staff at the school. Commissions ceased in 1971.
The Friends of Kingston Museum successfully relaunched the scheme in 1997 with a new commission by Leo Duff entitled Kingston Bus Station by Night. The new initiative was supported financially by Kingston University, Kingston Rotary Club and other donors.
Donations for further paintings have subsequently been made and new works included in the collection by commission or competition. The collection now has more than 110 paintings with additions being made on an annual basis. Please make a donation to help increase the collection.
Paintings from the collection are on display as part of a rolling programme in the staircase gallery at Kingston Museum. Periodically the whole Collection goes on display in Kingston Museum's art gallery. Please ask about these special exhibitions. Researchers may also see individual paintings in Kingston History Centre by appointment.
The Friends of the Museum have published a catalogue of the collection. Paintings of a Changing Kingston: Kingston Museum's Brill Collection by June Sampson and Henrietta Harris is available from Kingston Museum or Kingston Local History Room. Cost - £10. Add £2.50 for postage and packing in UK and £7.50 for overseas.