An ivory bust by Cheverton of James Watt

Benjamin Cheverton (British, 1794-1876), after Sir Francis Legatt Chantrey (British, 1781-1841), Bust of James Watt, engineer (1736-1819) (detail), 1842, ivory on marble base, 23.7 x 10.2 x 6.8 cm. The Thomson Collection © Art Gallery of Ontario

Idea Lab: Research at the AGO Investigating the Works of Benjamin Cheverton

February 21, 2015 – August 12, 2018

This exhibition is included with general admission.

Visit for Free. Become a Member today!


Benjamin Cheverton (British, 1794–1876) was a man of many talents: he excelled in invention, science and craftsmanship. In the 1820s, he perfected a sculpture-copying machine that predates modern 3-D printers by more than 150 years. Working from full-sized busts created by other sculptors, he used the machine to produce exact, miniaturized copies.

This exhibition invites you to explore ongoing research into the works of Benjamin Cheverton from the Thomson Collection at the Art Gallery of Ontario. Constantly seeking answers, AGO curators and conservators closely examine the works, comb through primary documents and visit other museums to study related objects and research materials. For example, new in-depth findings have revealed the identities of a number of the sitters depicted in Cheverton's works.

Organized by the Art Gallery of Ontario




Be the first to find out about AGO exhibitions and events, get the behind-the-scenes scoop and book tickets before it’s too late.
You can unsubscribe at any time.