Curio: Hidden Gems from the BirdsNest Collection
9 August - 18 September 2022
In this unique exhibition, a selection of treasures from the BirdsNest Collection will be illuminated and explored, many of which have not been previously on display. This summer, we are delighting in the exotic and strange, pieces of art that dazzle and defy expectation. Many of these eccentric artworks are associated with remarkable stories and creatives, tales which we aim to unfurl for our visitors.
Drawing upon the origin of museums and galleries as Wunderkammern (or "curiosity cabinets"), this exhibition honours the BirdsNest motto to "preserve tradition and nurture the new". The curiosity cabinet originated during the Italian Renaissance, marking the beginning of the act of showcasing an arranged collection of rare objects and absurdities. This practice became an indicator of wealth and status, as well as an expression of personality and taste. The diverse mediums and varieties of objects on display created an experience more jumbled than conventions today might allow, with skulls, seashells, rare coins, paintings, sculptures, and more jostling for space.
Curio endeavours to reclaim the relative informality and abundance of this original mode of display, offering food for thought and a feast for the eyes.
Viewing by appointment only: book here
14 June-17 July
Named after Frederic Leighton's iconic painting, our Flaming June exhibition captured a similar sense of bliss. In his famous scene, a young woman dressed in a gauzy orange gown slumbers outside; her radiant beauty represents the fiery yet tranquil spirit of summer.
This exhibition featured artworks by MaryAnne Hunt and Andrew Fitzpatrick, focusing on motifs of love and the spaces that confine or liberate us—in these paintings, couples danced in an intimate tango, a mother tenderly held her child, and lonely figures roamed long corridors.