Foundling Museum holds an extraordinary story of how children born out of wedlock in the past centuries were given a chance. Of course these days we see it with different eyes but... read more
The Foundling Museum explores the history of the Foundling Hospital, the...
The Foundling Museum explores the history of the Foundling Hospital, the UK’s first children’s charity and first public art gallery, and through a dynamic programme of exhibitions and events celebrates the ways in which artists of all disciplines have helped improve children’s lives for over 275 years.
The Foundling Hospital, which continues today as the children’s charity Coram, was established in 1739 by the philanthropist Captain Thomas Coram, as ‘a hospital for the maintenance and education of exposed and deserted young children’. Instrumental in helping Coram realise his vision were the artist William Hogarth, who encouraged leading artists of the day to donate work, and the composer George Frideric Handel, who gave annual benefit concerts of his Messiah. In doing so, they created London’s first public art gallery and their creative generosity set the template for the ways in which the arts can support philanthropy. The Foundling Museum celebrates their vision and continues their work by enabling artists, musicians and writers to work alongside vulnerable young people and cast new light on the histories we tell.