Ancient Landscapes Portrayed

‘British Art: Ancient Landscapes’, The Salisbury Museum, The King’s House, 65 The Close, Salisbury SP1 2EN, until 3rd September 2017

Alan Sorrell (1904–1974)
Sunrise Over Stonehenge
Watercolour on Paper
The Salisbury Museum

I am really grateful to Professor Sam Smiles (Emeritus Professor of Art History at the University of Plymouth) for his deep interest in archaeology and the history of art because they are engagingly combined in this important show. There is an accompanying catalogue by him too.

Eric Ravilious (1903-1942)
The Long Man of Wilmington,1939
Watercolour
© Victoria and Albert Museum, London

Prehistory in this country is celebrated in works from the 18th century onwards to the present time. Views of Stonehenge by Thomas Hearne, Charles Marshall, Constable, Turner, Henry Moore and Henry McKnight Kauffer are found among other archaeological sites both in Wiltshire and elsewhere. William Blake, John Piper, Barbara Hepworth and Derek Jarman are among the other artists you will experience in this hugely enjoyable exhibition.

Horace Brodzky (1885-1969)
Stonehenge, 1919
Linocut

The Museum’s Marketing Officer Louise Tunnard says: “We are so fortunate to live alongside the ancient landscapes that inspired these wonderful artists, and which remain relatively unchanged since pre historic times. I am hoping that we will inspire visitors to the exhibition to walk these landscapes too and discover their enduring appeal.” I am sure that they will!

J M W Turner (1775-1851)
Stonehenge c, 1827-28
Watercolour
The Salisbury Museum

 

http://www.salisburymuseum.org.uk/

Turner in Salisbury

Turner’s Wessex – Architecture and Ambition, The Salisbury Museum, The King’s House, 65 The Close, Salisbury SP1 2EN, until 27th September 2015

Salisbury from Old Sarum c.1827-1828 Watercolour JMW Turner © The Salisbury Museum

Salisbury from Old Sarum c.1827-1828 Watercolour JMW Turner
© The Salisbury Museum

This hugely enjoyable exhibition serves as a timely reminder that there are some very fine exhibitions to be found outside London. Combine Salisbury and the young J MW Turner and the results are quite magical. As well as works from the Museum’s own collection there are loans from Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery, British Museum, Fitzwilliam Museum, National Galleries Scotland, V & A, Whitworth Art Gallery and the Tate.

A series of watercolours, executed between 1797 and 1805, depicting both the Cathedral and City were commissioned by Sir Richard Colt Hoare and the eight large ones of the cathedral which used to hang in the library of Colt Hoare’s family home Stourhead are reunited for the first time since their sale in 1883. There are also some studies of the famous Stourhead gardens too.

North Porch of Salisbury Cathedral, Exhibited RA 1797 Watercolour JMW Turner © The Salisbury Museum

North Porch of Salisbury Cathedral, Exhibited RA 1797 Watercolour JMW Turner
© The Salisbury Museum

Another Wiltshire landowner was William Beckford and his commission for Turner to depict his Fonthill estate was also a feather in Turner’s cap. The sketches he created provide a fascinating glimpse into the erection of the famous Fonthill tower which would collapse in 1825.

Stonehenge c.1827-29 Watercolour JMW Turner © The Salisbury Museum

Stonehenge c.1827-29 Watercolour JMW Turner
© The Salisbury Museum

Turner’s first visit to Salisbury was in 1795 and he would return to the area occasionally over the next thirty years – to Stonehenge as well as to the Isle of Wight and the southern coast – and these visits are recorded in the last section of an exhibition I have no hesitation in recommending.

http://www.salisburymuseum.org.uk