Opening next week – Major works of art from national collections to join in a celebration of the Pre-Raphaelite Legacy on the South Coast. – Southampton City Art Gallery

Opening next week – Major works of art from national collections to join in a celebration of the Pre-Raphaelite Legacy on the South Coast.

11 Oct 2019

The exhibition, entitled Beyond the Brotherhood: The Pre-Raphaelite Legacy, is supported by the Weston Loan Programme with Art Fund, and will run at Southampton City Art Gallery from 18 October 2019 until 1 February 2020 then at the Russell-Cotes Art Gallery and Museum, Bournemouth, from 21 February until 21 June 2020.

Romeo and Juliet, Frank Bernard Dicksee (1884) ©Southampton City Art GalleryVenus Verticordia, Dante Gabriel Rossetti (1864-1868) ©Russell-Cotes Art Gallery and MuseumVanity, Frank Cadogan Cowper (1907) ©Royal Academy


This major exhibition highlights the importance of the Pre-Raphaelite movement and its influence on contemporary art and culture, as seen in the fantastical imagery of Lord of the Rings and Game of Thrones.

Tracing the Pre-Raphaelite thread from its inception, this exhibition brings together stunning imagery from across the decades, following the movement’s influence on artistic developments including Realism, Aestheticism, Symbolism and Art Nouveau. It will illustrate how Pre-Raphaelitism lives on in contemporary fantasy, book illustration and film, and how it inspires artists today. Works by Kieran Belshaw, concept artist for four series of Game of Thrones, demonstrate how the Pre-Raphaelite legacy lives on in the 21st century.

Daenerys Targaryen Fleet, from Game of Thrones, Season 6, 2016 © Kieran Belshaw

The loans have been realised through the Weston Loan Programme with Art Fund; created by the Garfield Weston Foundation and Art Fund. The Weston Loan Programme is the first ever UK-Wide funding scheme to enable smaller and local authority museums to borrow works of art and artefacts from national collections.

Both Southampton City Art Gallery and Russell Cotes Art Gallery and Museum hold significant Pre-Raphaelite works in their permanent collections. Southampton’s collection features Edward Burne-Jones’ Perseus Series; Holman Hunt’s Afterglow in Egypt and Ford Madox Brown’s Cordelia’s Portion. The Russell-Cotes holds Evelyn De Morgan’s Aurora Triumphans and Dante Gabriel Rossetti’s Venus Verticordia, as well as an important collection of works in tempera.

Sophia Weston, Trustee of the Garfield Weston Foundation, said: “We are delighted that these incredibly beautiful works of art are coming to the South Coast as part of our loan programme. When we started the Weston Loan Programme we hoped it would help bring national treasures to many different communities across the UK and we are thrilled that the people of Southampton and Bournemouth will get to enjoy these masterpieces. We hope they will inspire the next generation of artists.”

Stephen Deuchar, Director of Art Fund, said: “The Weston Loan Programme with Art Fund is about encouraging museums to share their collections with each other and bringing new benefit and opportunity to their visitors. We’re proud to be working with the Garfield Weston Foundation to realise this important national programme.”

Anne Anderson, Curator of Beyond the Brotherhood, explains “There have been many Pre-Raphaelite exhibitions but most do not extend beyond the First World War, often seen as a natural end to the movement. This exhibition demonstrates that Pre-Raphaelitism persisted by influencing later artists, providing an outlet for reaction against austerity in the 1970s, and expressing the innate artistic attraction to Romanticism. Today it manifests itself in Fantasy artwork and themes on both the big and small screen.”

Councillor Satvir Kaur, Cabinet Member for Homes and Culture, said “We’re thrilled to receive funding from the Weston Loan Programme with the Art Fund. Borrowing nationally significant works of art to complement Southampton’s own internationally-renowned collection enables us to continue to produce high quality and diverse exhibitions, that are accessible to everyone and help promote Southampton as a cultural destination. As one of the 12 hosts for the Leonardo Da Vinci exhibition produced by the Royal Collection Trust, we’re proud to continue to work in partnership with national and regional institutions and build on the funding that we have received from the DCMS/Wolfson Museums and Galleries Improvement Fund, Arts Council England and the Headley Trust for the Art Gallery, as one of Southampton’s hidden gems.”

Dan Matthews, Exhibitions & Collections Manager at Southampton City Art Gallery said “Thanks to funding from the Weston Loan Programme with the Art Fund, we are bringing to the south coast some beautiful and compelling paintings by John Millais, Dante Gabriel Rossetti, Frank Cadogan Cowper and Edward Gregory amongst others. Our partnership with the Russell-Cotes Art Gallery and Museum unites two fine collections and, in combination with significant loans from national institutions, will create a stunning exhibition that will captivate audiences from across the region and beyond”.


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