Architectural and Garden Historian
Lecturer and Writer
Paula Henderson is a lecturer and writer on British architecture and garden history. She has degrees in art history (University of Wisconsin, B.A.; University of Chicago, M.A.) and a Ph.D. in architectural history from the Courtauld Institute of Art (University of London). She has studied the decorative arts (The Study Centre for the History of the Fine and Decorative Arts, London) and is fluent in Italian, having obtained medio and superior diplomas from L’Universita per Stranieri, Perugia.
Her first book, The Tudor House and Garden: architecture and landscape in the 16th and early 17th centuries (published by Yale University Press), won the prestigious Berger Prize for the outstanding contribution to the history of British art for 2005. Treehouses (co-authored with Adam Mornement) was published by Frances Lincoln, also in 2005. She has also contributed individual chapters to a number of other books and essays for key reference books, including the chapter on ‘Gardens’ for the multi-award winning Cambridge Guide to the Worlds of Shakespeare; and a number of entries in The Encyclopedia of Gardens: History and Design, published for the Chicago Botanic Garden. In addition to articles on British subjects, Paula has also written about Mughal and Japanese gardens and is a frequent reviewer of books. For a full list – see books and articles.
Paula has worked as a consultant and expert witness for important historic gardens , including Bramshill (Hampshire), Lyveden New Bield (The National Trust), Charlton House (Kent), Eastbury Manor (Barking), Holland Park (Kensington) and the Queen's House, Greenwich (for the National Maritime Museum). She has appeared on (and advised) several BBC television programmes on historic gardens. She regularly organized courses and study trips for the Courtauld Institute of Art and will do private visits on request. She has also lectured for many major London museums and academic institutions in Britain and the United States. See lectures and programmes.
For ten years, Paula and Dr Claire Gapper organized the most important annual conference on 16th- and 17th- century British architecture, held each January at the Society of Antiquaries in London.
Work in progress includes books on Shakespeare’s London; and Landscape as Art.
Paula is a Fellow of the Society of Antiquaries of London.
After living in London and the Cotswolds for 43 years, Paula and her husband Schuyler returned to the United States in 2020. She currently splits her time between Nantucket Island, Massachusetts and Williamsburg, Virginia.