Artworks from Southampton City Art Gallery and The Russell-Cotes Art Gallery and Museum are to be joined by masterpieces from national collections, including Tate Britain, the Victoria and Albert Museum, and the Royal Academy.
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.
This major exhibition will highlight 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.
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.
Sophia Mason, 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 1960s, and expressing the innate artistic attraction to Romanticism. Today it manifests itself in Fantasy artwork and themes on both the big and small screen.”
Sarah Newman, Museum Manager of the Russell Cotes Art Gallery and Museum, explained that
“Thanks to funding from the Weston Loan Programme with the Art Fund, we will be able to bring to the region some beautiful and compelling paintings by John Millais, Dante Gabriel Rossetti, Frank Cadogan Cowper and Edward Gregory amongst others. Together with the Pre-Raphaelite highlights from the collections of Southampton City Art Gallery and the Russell-Cotes, it will create a stunning exhibition of stand-out names and hidden surprises which I think will captivate audiences from across the region and beyond.”
Councillor Pat Oakley, Bournemouth Portfolio holder for Tourism, Leisure and the Arts, said:
“This funding from the Weston Loan Programme with the Art Fund builds on recent grants from DCMS/Wolfson Museums and Galleries Improvement Fund, Arts Council England and the Heritage Lottery Fund which are enabling us to invest in the fabric, programming and sustainability of the Russell-Cotes. I am delighted that this funding will enable this extraordinary and unique Art Gallery and Museum to achieve even more and deservedly raise its profile across the region, by bringing paintings of an outstanding quality to a wider audience.”