‘Capture the Castle: British Artists and the Castle from Turner to Le Brun’ at Southampton City Art Gallery this summer – Southampton City Art Gallery

‘Capture the Castle: British Artists and the Castle from Turner to Le Brun’ at Southampton City Art Gallery this summer

20 Apr 2017

20 April 2017


Showcasing the finest historic and contemporary castle artists and combining history with art, Capture the Castle at Southampton City Art Gallery is the first ever large-scale art exhibition on the subject of British castles.  It conjures the mystique, excitement and prestige of the castle from Iron Age hill forts to Victorian reproductions and fantasy castles. It will include famous and rarely seen works from public and private collections, including loans from Tate, The British Museum, V&A, the Government Art Collection and from the collections of major artists.

Steeped in history and legend, these extraordinary buildings exude a powerful and brooding presence. They conjure knights in shining armour, high-born heroines, evil deeds and deep dungeons, high adventure and royal intrigue. The first sight of a great Medieval castle such as Conwy, Harlech or Dover can be a spine-tingling moment because of their exceptional visual wow factor.

Turner, Girtin, Cotman, Ibbetson, Sandby, Varley and many others travelled to castles throughout Britain in the search of the Picturesque. Castles, often sited in spectacular locations, were the perfect subject for the Romantic movement of the early 19th century that embraced the heroic past. Castles have been equally inspiring to modern-day artists and the exhibition includes work by over 25 contemporary artists including Christopher Le Brun (President of the Royal Academy of Arts), Alan Rankle, Norman Ackroyd RA, Alan Lee and David Gentleman.

Councillor Satvir Kaur, Cabinet Member for Communities, Culture and Leisure at Southampton City Council said: “Castles are a fascinating and intrinsic part of our country’s and this city’s history. Southampton boasts some of the most amazing heritage sites and I am delighted Southampton City Art Gallery will be showcasing this theme through an exciting exhibition on castles. There will be a range of artwork for local residents and visitors alike to come and enjoy. It is great opportunity to see works from the city’s collections, alongside loans from other great collections around the country. I urge everyone, castle lovers and none alike, to take advantage of this great show.”

Capture the Castle will be complemented by an exhibition dedicated to Southampton Castle at Tudor House & Garden, situated in the city’s Old Town, alongside an exciting joint learning programme with English Heritage and also a major symposium on castles, hosted by the University of Southampton.

The exhibition will include a fully illustrated catalogue, which has been generously sponsored by the Punter Southall Group, and runs from 26 May – 2 September 2017.



Further information
For further information, images or requests for interviews, please contact Gareth Colwell, Senior Communications Officer at Southampton City Council on 023 8083 4536 or gareth.colwell@southampton.gov.uk.

About Southampton City Art Gallery
The gallery, based in Southampton’s burgeoning Cultural Quarter, opened in 1939. It offers the opportunity to enjoy high quality exhibitions ranging from painting, sculpture and drawing, to photography and film, as well as permanent collection and displays that change regularly to ensuring new experiences with each visit.

Southampton City Art Gallery is internationally renowned for its permanent collection which features around 5,000 works. These span eight centuries and tell the story of western art from the Renaissance to the present day. The core of the collection is twentieth century and contemporary British art. Strong clusters within this include Post-Impressionism (notably the Camden Town Group), Surrealism, St. Ives and progressive contemporary art from the mid-1970s.

The gallery is open from 10am-3pm Monday to Friday, 10am-5pm on Saturdays and closed on Sundays. Admission is free. Find out more at southamptoncityartgallery.com.

Image Credit: J.M.W. Turner, Norham Castle, on the River Tweed, 1822-3, Tate Collection , accepted by the nation as part of the Turner Bequest 1856 © Tate, London, 2017

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