Emily Burns is a curator at the Watts Gallery – Artists' Village and an art historian specialising in British art and collecting, with a particular interest in portraiture. She is currently editor of the forthcoming Jordaens Van Dyck Journal, and was previously Vivmar Curatorial Fellow at the National Gallery (2018–2020) and Assistant Curator at the National Portrait Gallery (2013–2018).

Emily holds a doctorate on art and collecting in England during the Civil War and Interregnum, c.1640–1660 (University of Nottingham, 2018), and remains engaged in research into mid-seventeenth-century painting. She was co-convenor of the Paul Mellon Centre's Early Career Researchers Network between 2018 and 2020, and has contributed essays and catalogue entries on Trewithen House, Raynham Hall and Petworth House for the Paul Mellon Centre's Art & the Country House project.